Six Nations 2013: Lancaster hails maturity of young England squad

Six Nations 2013: Stuart Lancaster praises the maturity of his young squad after they secured England's first win in Dublin since 2003.

Ireland
6
England
12

Stuart Lancaster praised the maturity of his young squad after they secured England’s first win in Dublin since 2003.

With the likes of Brad Barritt and Billy Twelvetrees starting the game, England’s centres had just 13 caps between them compared to Brian O’Driscoll’s 121.

But after taking a 6-0 lead into half time, Lancaster was thrilled at the way his young charges responded to Ireland pulling level to run out 12-6 winners despite James Haskell’s second half sin binning.

“We had a good first half, I was pleased with how we went,” said Lancaster, who is in charge of his second Six Nations campaign.

“Obviously at the start of the second half there were a couple of turnovers at scrum and lineout time which put us under pressure but I thought the way we handled the sin binning period was actually critical, and I thought we grew in strength towards the end of the game and deserved the win.

“There’s a lot of young players out there who have come to Dublin and played for the first time away from home, and we’ve not won here for a long time.

“And you see the weather out there – the lads are freezing and the subs are absolutely shivering and we’ve gone and got the win 12-6, so well take it.”

Victory means England are the only team capable of going on and completing an RBS 6 Nations Grand Slam in 2013, but Lancaster insisted he is looking no further than the visit of France to Twickenham in a fortnight’s time.

“The stakes have always been high, but they are going to get higher when you’ve got the likes of France comes to Twickenham after losing yesterday,” he said.

“So we’ll have a rest over the next week or so, some quiet training and then we’ll build ourselves up for that game at Twickenham, which is massive.”

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