- Despite nose fracture, wing confident after full week of training
- “We want to find that little bit extra” – May
Jonny May only lasted eight minutes at the Stade de France last Saturday before a broken nose halted his second Test cap, but the Gloucester Rugby wing has been cleared to face Scotland and is determined to make a more lasting contribution.
Despite his injury, May gave a fleeting glimpse of the balanced running that has endeared him to the Kingsholm faithful, scampering eight metres from two carries as England attempted to cancel out an early deficit in their RBS 6 Nations opener.
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And while an inadvertent collision with Mike Brown’s knee sent him to the stands, the 23 year-old feels ready to help England towards a fifth consecutive victory over the Auld Enemy.
“I’ve been cleared by the specialist and have managed to get some contact training in and it hasn’t bothered me at all,” he said.
“It was funny. It didn’t hurt too much but it was bleeding quite a lot and the doctor made the call to protect it. I’m lucky in terms of it being not as bad as it could have been.
“Obviously it wasn’t ideal but I can still take a lot of confidence from how I started the game and how much I’ve learned over the past two weeks. I obviously know the gameplan a little bit better and I‘ve been around the environment a bit longer.”
In spite of May’s absence, Stuart Lancaster’s charges turned out an encouraging performance in attack that included 15 offloads and some fast-paced phase-play around the ruck.
Indeed, though teenage replacement Gael Fickou struck in the final four minutes to steal victory for Les Bleus, many have praised England’s display as among the most ambitious in recent years.
“We’ve been focussing on the positives from the game and there are a lot of them,” acknowledged May.
“We’ve talked about upping it by one per cent each player so we can collectively raise our performance and add that bit extra so we can get a good win up in Scotland.”
Along with Cherry and Whites teammate Billy Twelvetrees, May was part of an impressive 23-13 Heineken Cup win up in Edinburgh last December at Murrayfield.
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The surface was somewhat stodgy that day, but May made one sparkling 70-metre run for an assist. Rather self-deprecating about what was a phenomenal piece of counter-attacking, he did admit that there were some fond memories of the venue.
“Gloucester had a really good win over there,” May smiled. “The pitch tears up a bit but there are big dead-ball areas that can create opportunities for kicks and it’s a big pitch as well.
“It was one of those days – there was a hole in the kick-chase line and I managed to get through. the main thing was that we managed to get a win for Gloucester.
“When we were up there it felt like a home game because of the amount of fans we had there. I’m sure it will be more hostile on Saturday – Scotland is a passionate nation.
“Having said that, we want to go there and focus on ourselves and on our own gameplan.”