Article

Heaslip tempers Irish optimism

9 February 2013 16:06

Ireland captain Jamie Heaslip says his team are taking nothing for granted ahead of the Six Nations clash with England in Dublin on Sunday.

Ireland will go in to the game full of confidence after an excellent first-half performance en route to a 30-22 victory over Wales last weekend.

However, Heaslip believes his side will have to improve against an England outfit who got the better of the All Blacks late last year before beating Scotland in their Six Nations opener last week.

"We're definitely not getting carried away. Whoever watched the video were brought back down to the ground with a crash if they'd had any lofty ideas. In the video work as well mistakes were pointed out, errors were pointed out, and we have to correct them," Heaslip said, referring to his team's review of their performance in the win over Wales.

"We're quite focused on the task in hand, which is England. We've looked at them - the November series, their summer tour, the game last week - and, you know, we thought last week was tough but this is probably going to be as tough if not another level up because they've got a game under their belt now.

"Hopefully last week will stand for us both, from an attacking point of view, having the ball in the first half and then a defensive effort in the second half. It's going to be a big challenge."

Ireland head coach Declan Kidney echoed his captain's sentiments, labelling the match against an in-form English side as a far tougher test to the one against Wales.

"You know you're against one of the top sides in the world - they proved that, like Jamie said, in November and they're on a high at the moment," Kidney said.

"It's going to be an extremely physical challenge, and technically and tactically too. They'll push us in every single way, and those are the bits that we have to be right for."

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