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- World Cup winning captain Martin Johnson recalls the fans in 2003
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Martin Johnson has urged fans to get behind the England squad as they get ready to tour Australia and New Zealand.
As the England Team Manager prepares to name his touring party, he told today’s RFU Podcast: "It would be great to see a lot of fans over there."
Recalling the huge travelling support that England’s victorious 2003 Rugby World Cup squad received, Johnson added: "We had a lot of fans over there for the whole tournament but when we went out for the semi final, a huge match against France, the stadium was virtually entirely white. It was incredible.
"And for the final, to be playing the host nation yet to have almost equal support was amazing. It does make a big difference."
Closer to home, Johnson has opened the doors to England training and is looking forward to the addition of a crowd when the public watch the players put through their paces at Twickenham Stadium on May 18.
"From previous sessions like this we know the fans enjoy it and the players do too. The guys hear fans cheering and they react, it gives the session a lift. And it’s good fun."
To hear the interview in full and the rest of the RFU.com podcast, right click on the link and select 'save as' to download the April 29, 2010 podcast or subscribe via iTunes by pasting the following url into the subscribe page http://www.rfu.com/podcast/subscribe/podcast.xml
Also on this week’s podcast:
- Amlin Challenge Cup (semi final: London Wasps v Cardiff Blues) – dynamic duo Danny Cipriani and Joe Simpson hope that the return of a number of big names will help Wasps in their search for silverware to round off the season
- Amlin Challenge Cup (semi final: Toulon v Connaught) – England fly half Jonny Wilkinson says he still has an intrinsic goal to win every game and believes his French side can keep getting better and better
- Amlin Challenge Cup – Despite the strength of French and Irish teams, Amlin Ambassador Lawrence Dallaglio is confident that with Guinness Premiership tries coming thick and fast, English clubs will bounce back in Europe
- Army v Navy for the Babcock Trophy – Army head coach Andy Price believes the history books are for historians not for rugby players and coaches as the Reds hope to make their experience count in front of an anticipated 59,000-strong crowd
- Army v Navy for the Babcock Trophy – Navy Director of Rugby Geriant Ashton-Jones believes that after playing in front of 10,000 in Toulon, his players won’t be phased by the big occasion
The RFU.com podcast takes you inside English rugby from the grassroots to the elite.