- Fly half Toby Flood on the team ethos in the current England squad
- Team collective is key to all we want to achieve says Leicester No.10
We’re all in it for each other says England fly half Toby Flood who is ignoring his own individual aspirations at the Rugby World Cup this autumn, preferring to focus on the team.
Fellow England squad member and world record international points scorer Jonny Wilkinson slotted himself firmly into the pantheon of great England fly halves with his last-gasp drop goal to defeat Australia and win the Rugby World Cup in 2003.
And Leicester Tigers’ Flood says that should he find himself in a similar position, the 25-year-old will be doing it for a squad who have been through pressure situations together.
Speaking exclusively to RFUtv, Flood said: "I think you see it as a team collective about what we’re about to try and achieve, I don’t think there are any personal gains to be made.
"I don’t think Jonny would ever say he dropped that goal for him or what he thought he would reap rewards from. I think he did it for the hours he puts in out on the field – like a lot of kickers have to – and also for the team and for the collective.
"When we do team session or a fitness session you see the pain the guys are going through and the work they’re going through. Every team is the same but the nice thing is when you’re training or you’re putting those last hard efforts to hopefully do it on the field, that’s when you see the reward in the guys faces because you know they’ve felt the pressure and the fitness strain with you."
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Flood has started England’s last 12 Test matches and says consistency in selection – for himself and the whole back division – has been a major factor in the development of the side.
The top points scorer in the 2011 RBS 6 Nations believes this run in the England side over the last 12 months, alongside his move to Leicester from Newcastle Falcons in 2008, have made him the fly half he is today.
He added: "There has been a good atmosphere around the squad and the fact that there’s been this continued and prolonged selection campaign has allowed a lot of individuals to learn from each other and collectively get better.
"Leicester has had a huge impact on me and also getting that run in the England side has made a big difference. You learn quite quickly and quite a lot, I’ve been lucky enough to have 12 in a row and it’s made a big difference."