Robinson scoring England’s try just before half-time
England made heavy weather of beating Italy to earn an unconvincing second Six Nations win of the season.
Until Jason Robinson’s try just before half-time, all England had to show for their early pressure was three Jonny Wilkinson penalties.
A second win in two weeks, but this wasn’t the most convincing win I’ve seen from England. (It was still better than the more convincing defeats that I have seen in the last year or so).
A lot was said in studio commentary on the BBC about how poor England had played, but I disagree with that.
After the win last week we knew that Italy was going to be much less tougher opposition, so maybe we only had to do what was necessary to win today.
Some had doubted the reasoning behind bringing back Johnny Wilkinson for last weeks match and that we should be holding him back for the Irish match in two weeks time.
Well having played only 40mins of club rugby prior to last weeks win, he probably needs all the play time he can get. Simarlly so for most of the England team.
Last weeks win was important, as was the style that England played.
Not losing this week was important, not the style of winning. On that front England performed that task well. Now we have two weeks to prepare for the match at Croke Park against the Irish. The result of that match will provide a good indication of how far England have come or have to progress to get back to the World Cup form of 4 years ago. It will also provide a measure of how much work the new coach Ashton has in order to prepare us for the upcoming Autumn World Cup Series.
Hardly an entertaining match for the 82,000 or so fans at Twickenham, but none the less, we can say that England are so far unbeaten in 2007, in the Six Nations and that has to be an improvement over last year.