Owen Farrell: I’m fit and ready to take on All Blacks
England outside-half reveals he is focused and confident of performing well as New Zealand return to Twickenham
Owen Farrell insists he is fully fit ahead of England’s clash with New Zealand at Twickenham on Saturday.
The 23-year-old has started just once since September 20 after a spell on the sidelines with a quad problem but, having come through all 80 minutes of last month’s European Champions Cup defeat to Munster, the Saracens outside-half feels he is refreshed and ready to go against the world champions.
I feel like I’ve kept up to speed with everything
“The Munster game showed I can play a full game of rugby, but I’ve felt good for a bit longer than that,” he said.
“I’d pushed to come back a little bit earlier than when I did, but having one or two more weeks was probably the right thing to do.
“I feel like I’ve kept up to speed with everything, made sure I’ve done my work off the field, and also kept up with my skills on it, so if I was selected I’d be confident.”
Earlier this week, England head coach Stuart Lancaster confirmed that Farrell had looked fine in training at their Pennyhill Park base, and Farrell admits that he feels he has kept improving even while out of action.
“I was watching enough rugby that I was still improving even though I was injured,” he added. “As a fly-half you try to watch a game and see all the decisions that have been made.
“You ask yourself what you’d do in that situation and what effect that decision has on the game. Sometimes doing that, for me, is better than having a training session.”
The 25-times capped international, who missed England’s 3-0 series defeat in New Zealand, expects England to take the game to the All Blacks.
“We have to be positive,” he said. “We won’t go into the game trying to just hold them out, we will go in and have a go.
“If that positivity turns into pressure and you get three points from it then that is the case, but we will be positive in the way that we play.
“As a group we feel we are definitely going in the right direction, but we have to put in the performances to back that up.
“Hopefully those performances will turn into wins.
“It is important we keep getting better and we keep pushing each other along and that we are constantly striving to be the best we can be. As long as we are doing that, the performances will come.”
Farrell is expected to get the nod to start ahead of Bath’s George Ford after both were named in England’s match-day 23 ahead of Thursday’s team announcement.