- Wing pleased but not satisfied with storming start for London Irish
- “It’s the greater detail that is going to separate you by that one or two per cent” – Yarde
Despite a scintillating start to the domestic season, Marland Yarde has insisted he will not ease off in his quest to nail down an wing berth for England’s QBE Internationals next month.
Yarde has already crossed the whitewash four times for London Irish in the Aviva Premiership, and even showed some impressive industry at the breakdown as the Exiles landed a surprise 18-13 victory over Harlequins on Saturday.
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And while the 21 year-old is turning heads as a predatory, prolific try-scorer, he knows the less glamorous tasks are just as important in reinforcing his value to Stuart Lancaster.
“I just want to better myself and keep improving with my feet firmly on the ground,” said the Saint Lucia-born flyer. “I’ve only played 30-odd games in the Premiership – I’ve got to better myself every day.
“There’s been a drive and a focus on getting things right off the field – to do everything you can to prepare yourself right for games and scrutinise your own performance to see where you can get better.
“I’ve taken that into account and taken that into this season and have really benefited from it. It’s the greater detail that is going to separate you by that one or two per cent. It’s important that you put in the hard graft.”
Yarde was one of the younger faces to return from England’s summer tour to South America with his reputation hugely enhanced, grabbing a fine brace on his full international debut to contribute to a 51-26 second Test win over Argentina in Buenos Aires.
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However, although admitting his eye-catching performance did make family and friends “very proud”, Yarde maintained that a first taste of senior action has only whetted his appetite for further involvement.
“It was a massively humbling experience just being part of that group of players [on tour],” he added. “Looking back, it was fantastic for me and everyone who has helped me along the way. I just wanted to take it in my stride.
“When I got my chance in the second Test I just wanted to go out there, enjoy the experience and play to the best of my ability.
“It’s a special environment when you play for England. You have a group of players coming together to play for an iconic shirt who are willing to give everything for each other. On tour we really got an identity of how we wanted to play as a team and were able to play some really good rugby out there.
“Looking ahead to the autumn, we want to carry that through and play to a similar level.”