- Full wary of Stuart Hogg's “world-class” talent
- “We need to fly out of the blocks” – Brown
Mike Brown has found it tough to eradicate the hurt of last weekend’s last-gasp defeat to France and has warned his England teammates that another slow start at Murrayfield on Saturday would be disastrous.
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A stunning brace of tries from Yoann Huget saw Stuart Lancaster’s charges down 16-3 after the first quarter in Paris, and though they rallied wonderfully to lead, a late score from teenage replacement Gael Fickou saw Les Bleus to victory.
Muscling over from close range just before half-time, Brown recorded his maiden Test try to spark the initial comeback. However, he admitted it has taken him a while to shake off the “sulks” and appreciate his both that feat and his side’s fine attacking performance.
“I think at the time and after the game I couldn’t take too many positives because, in the end, we lost the game,” explained the Harlequin. “We’re here to win games and I’d much rather do that than score points.
“Anyone that spends time with me outside of rugby knows what I’m like. I normally sulk at home for a while [after a loss]. You try to leave things at the ground but it’s very difficult to do that.
“Now obviously [the try] feels like an achievement and I am proud to have helped my team back into the game. Eventually it’ll be something I look back fondly. Hopefully there are a few more in the locker at some point but to get one is great.
“Straight after the game the boys were massively frustrated but looking back on the game we’ve taken some positives.
“Our attack has come on really well so hopefully we can carry on with that, playing with pace and offloading – testing Scotland all over the pitch both wide and around the ruck as well. We need to make sure our defence is spot on too.”
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Brown’s opposite number in Edinburgh will be British and Irish Lions tourist Stuart Hogg, who was typically sparky will ball in hand against Ireland on Sunday.
Though Scott Johnson’s men were outclassed and comprehensively overturned 28-6, their full back beat six defenders and made 75 metres from 13 carries.
Praising Hogg’s speed, footwork and ability to step in at first-receiver to conduct attacks if needed, Brown suggested England had done their homework on one of Scotland’s main threats.
However, the 28 year-old was in little doubt as to the most crucial task in Edinburgh.
“It’s massively important, especially away from home, to start well. We haven’t done that the past couple of games so we need to fly out of the blocks and be both mentally and physically right so Scotland don’t get a head-start on us.
“We still feel we’re in this competition – one loss doesn’t put you out of it. That was a great example and showed what they’re about. It’s up to us to do the same.
“This tournament is incredibly tough and any team can beat another on their day. We’ve got to try and win every game from now on.”