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Corbisiero on England’s "all guns blazing" scrum

18 March 2012

  • Corbisiero on how England dismantled Ireland’s scrum and playing under Lancaster
  • "Nothing but good words to say about the environment and coaches" – Corbisiero
England prop Alex Corbisiero celebrates a successful England scrum

Photo: Getty Images

Alex Corbisiero lauded the experience of playing under England’s coaching trio after a leading role in dismantling Ireland’s scrum in the 30-9 RBS 6 Nations victory at Twickenham Stadium.

After leading 9-6 at the break, England emerged with ferocity and dominated the second 40 minutes with a penalty try, replacement Ben Youngs’ smart finish and 11 more points from the reliable boot of Owen Farrell, who finished the game with 20.

England regularly had Declan Kidney’s side back-pedalling at the scrum and celebrated the succession of penalties as a team, which loosehead Corbisiero said is a sign of their bond as a team and coaching set-up.

The 23-year-old said: "It’s been as very positive environment and we’ve tried to get the best out of each other. From the work we’ve put in and the bond we have as a team I’ve got nothing but good words to say about the environment we’re in and the coaches we have.

"In terms of the set piece it has been tremendous but also attack, work rate, reading the game and discipline. Andy Farrell has helped on the defensive element of this team, I think our defence has been outstanding and we’ve shown we’re a very hard team to breakdown. It’s been a positive throughout this tournament."

The crucial penalty try came in the 57th minute after a series of penalties – part of 12 Ireland conceded in total – five-metres out as Corbisiero and his front row colleagues Dylan Hartley and Dan Cole exerted their authority.

England front row Dan Cole (L), Dylan Hartley (C) and Alex Corbisiero

Photo: Getty Images

The London Irish man, who started every game in the tournament to take his tally of caps to 15, said England’s scrum grew in stature as the game progressed and pointed to their work as a unit.

"I think the weather played into our hands and the dominance allowed us to keep going. Last year they showed how good they can be and we knew we had to come out all guns blazing or we were going to suffer the same fate.

"It was a real battleground and as the game went on we were able to show our dominance more and more. It was a positive experience one through to eight and the bench. It’s not about individuals but a collective pack performance that saw us through."

Broadening his thoughts to the exceptional performance of the whole team and speaking about the pride he has in being part of this evolving group, Corbisiero added: "It was a fantastic day as a team and a positive experience that I will remember forever. I’m very proud to be involved, the crowd and everybody was exceptional.

"There’s been a lot of hard work, we’ve put our heads down and really worked as a team. The vibe is incredible and our hard work is starting to pay off.

"It is a great way to finish up and we’ve progressed through his tournament very well. I’m very proud to play alongside everyone in this team and have the utmost respect, love and pride in everyone that I played with out there."