Criticism has been harsh says Sackey

Click to follow

Paul Sackey is determined to silence the critics - and a few old friends - when England tackle defending RBS Six Nations champions Wales in the hostile surroundings of the Millennium Stadium tomorrow.

The Wasps winger admitted to being "frustrated" by England's lack of creativity in last weekend's uninspiring 36-11 victory over Italy.

But Sackey felt the criticism England received for their performance was harsh given they scored five tries and halted a run of three straight Test defeats.

Wales are hot favourites tomorrow as they chase an unprecedented third straight Six Nations win over England.

But Sackey views it as the perfect opportunity to prove those red rose doubters wrong - and serve Warren Gatland and Shaun Edwards a taste of their own medicine after Wales' victory at Twickenham last year.

"Last week was very frustrating for me. I like to get the ball in my hands and I like to have a bit of space," Sackey said.

"But it was our first game after such a disappointing autumn series. We wanted a win under our belts and we may have tightened it up and been a bit more cautious.

"Five tries in an international game is quite convincing. It is quite harsh for people to be saying what they are saying about England at the moment.

"We know we didn't play to the best of our ability at the moment and we still have a lot to work on but it was a step in the right direction.

"We want to play with a bit of expansion, to get the wingers into the game and we know we have the players to cause problems against the Welsh."

Despite Sackey's ambition, England are not set up to play that way and deliberately so, with Andy Goode retained at fly-half, Mike Tindall back at outside centre and the bulk of Joe Worsley selected on the open-side.

Martin Johnson has picked a team to try and contain Wales, to hang in there on the back of Goode's boot and hope to snatch a late win.

In short, England want to do tomorrow exactly what Wales did to them at Twickenham last season in order to secure the "substantial victory" they crave.

Forwards coach John Wells explained: "You should not underestimate how much of a difference a good win will make to this group of people.

"It was not so long ago that everybody was slating the Welsh but over the last year they have developed shape, pattern and play.

"The reason we can be positive is that if we are given time, we will develop."

If England can fire in attack, it will mean dominating the breakdown area, controlling the set-piece and finding a chink in a Welsh defensive armoury which only conceded two tries in the whole of last year's title-winning campaign.

Sackey, Worsley, James Haskell, Phil Vickery and Riki Flutey all know Edwards and his tactics inside out from club duty with Wasps.

But Sackey warned England not to get too complacent just because Edwards is so familiar as he is likely to sell them a massive dummy.

"Shaun and Warren Gatland know there are a lot of Wasps guys here and we have a little bit of an insight into how they defend," he added.

"They know that we know what they do and because of that I think they will change things and do things differently."