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VIDEO – Roberts and Wales braced for Twickenham test

25 February 2012

  • Centre impressed by England's start to RBS 6 Nations
  • Roberts expects tough test of Triple Crown credentials

 

A focussed Jamie Roberts is expecting an extremely difficult encounter at Twickenham on Saturday against an England side playing a determined brand of “winning rugby.”

Roberts, named to start by head coach Warren Gatland in what will be his 42nd Test, was, however, eager for his Wales teammates deliver a precise performance and secure a Triple Crown at the earliest possible opportunity.

"It’s a massive game and the boys are well aware of that,” said the 25 year-old Cardiff Blues inside centre. “We’ve had a good week of preparation with a week of rest before.

“We don't get to play at Twickenham too often and 2008 [when Wales won 26-19 to register their first victory at HQ for 20 years] certainly sticks in the memory for everyone involved.

“It’s a huge challenge for us but we know that, if we go down there and play 80 minutes of correct, rugby than we can beat England.”

Despite his confidence in securing another famous result, Roberts was also quick to compliment Stuart Lancaster’s charges on their own unblemished start to the RBS 6 Nations, which has seen arduous away wins over Scotland and Italy.

“Over the last two games, have played a brand of rugby that has allowed them to win games,” he explained. “That is the important thing at this level. You play rugby to win, it’s as simple as that – it doesn’t matter whether that is attractive rugby or not.

“Their fans may not be shouting from the rooftops but they have done well on the road, which is very significant. Murrayfield and Rome are not easy places to go, so it is a great start for a team with a lot of young faces and a new coaching team on what was a clean sheet for them after the World Cup. We are bracing ourselves.”

Jamie Roberts makes a break against England 

Photo: Getty Images

Having secured a last-gasp win over Ireland at Dublin’s Aviva Stadium in their only other match outside Cardiff so far this year, Wales will be buoyant on heading to Twickenham and Roberts finished by outlining the importance of those happy memories:

“Beating Ireland in Dublin was great – we can’t underestimate how good that was. It was good for us to play them first up too, because they are a very strong team and it is hard to see anyone else turning them over during this tournament.

“We have that experience now and it’s important that, as individuals, we have that in our mind-set now.”