England coach Graham Rowntree eager for revenge over Ireland

England's quest for revenge will ensure Saturday's final Rugby World Cup warm-up match against Ireland is anything but a friendly, according to scrum coach Graham Rowntree

Five months ago, England had their Grand Slam ambitions shattered at the Aviva Stadium as Ireland produced a ferocious performance to win 24-8.



England return to Dublin this weekend to complete their World Cup preparations having beaten Wales at home and then lost in frustrating fashion in Cardiff.



But now there is something on the line and Rowntree believes another defeat to Ireland would leave England under pressure going into the World Cup.



Ireland are in a similar boat, having lost to Scotland and twice to France over the last three weeks. There should be no shortage of intensity on show.



And just a fortnight before England open their World Cup campaign against Argentina in Dunedin, that is exactly what Rowntree wants.



"This game is definitely not a friendly," he said.



"We have not forgotten what they did to us over there. We got well beaten that day and that is in the back of our minds.



"It will be fuelling our fires at the weekend, that's for sure.



"That's the beauty of playing a game like this against Ireland so close to getting on the plane.



"We are purposely playing this close to the World Cup so we get on the plane battle hardened. That means coming off the back of an intense game with a win.



"We were frustrated with that loss in Wales. You only had to look at the gaffer's (Martin Johnson's) face after the game. I'd think Ireland are disappointed with their losses so far.



"If we lose it will put a bit of pressure on us. It would be nothing we can't handle - but it will put a bit of pressure on us for sure."



England failed to live with Ireland's intensity in the Six Nations meeting and that performance gave Johnson, Rowntree and the management some serious food for thought.



"They brought an intensity to the game, to the breakdown and set piece that they hadn't really brought all tournament. They saved that one for us," said Rowntree.



"We have had a good look at that video in the training camp and it has given us a few things to work on."



England fielded mix-and-match teams against Wales but Rowntree confirmed they plan to name their strongest available team to tackle Ireland.



Loosehead prop Andrew Sheridan is in line to make his first appearance of the warm-up campaign against Ireland after recovering from summer shoulder surgery.



But England will be without squad captain Lewis Moody and scrum-half Ben Youngs, who remain sidelined as they continue their comeback from knee injuries.



Joe Simpson, selected as England's third scrum-half behind Youngs and Richard Wigglesworth, is set to make his Test debut. Johnson confirms his selection on Thursday.



"We'll have our strongest team out," said Rowntree.



"I am not suggesting it will be our starting team against Argentina because we have still got a few positions to sort out in the pecking order.



"In crucial positions we have people challenging. That is a good thing this close to the World Cup.



"Ben and Lewis wont be involved this weekend. Whether they are involved against Argentina, we will see after week one in New Zealand."



James Haskell was today undergoing a scan on a "minor foot injury".



PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
Suited and booted in the Lanvin show at the Paris menswear collections
fashionParis Fashion Week
Arts and Entertainment
arts + ents
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Kara Tointon and Jeremy Piven star in Mr Selfridge
tvActress Kara Tointon on what to expect from Series 3
Voices
Winston Churchill, then prime minister, outside No 10 in June 1943
voicesA C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
News
i100
News
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project