Six Nations 2013: Resilience will give England edge over Wales says Brad Barritt

The sides meet in Cardiff on Saturday in title showdown

Brad Barritt believes England's resilience will give them the edge if Saturday's Grand Slam decider against Wales goes down to the wire.

Twelve months ago, it was Wales who edged a 19-12 thriller at Twickenham en route to claiming a third Grand Slam in eight years.

But Barritt is convinced England would win that game now because of the character and resolve that has been forged in the team over the last year.

Head coach Stuart Lancaster calls it their "warrior spirit" and England have often been at their best when called on to battle through adversity.

And Barritt expects those qualities to be vital against a Wales side aiming to retain their RBS 6 Nations title in the Millennium Stadium cauldron.

"That resilience and the ability to win when things aren't going your way are key traits," Barritt said.

"In last year's game against Wales, this team was still pretty inexperienced. There have been great stepping stones along the way since then."

The first of those staging posts was the summer tour of South Africa, when England bounced back from two brutally physical defeats to draw the third Test in Port Elizabeth.

The second was on December 1, when England buried the frustration of consecutive home defeats to beat world champions New Zealand at Twickenham.

And the third came in Dublin earlier in this championship, when England beat Ireland 12-6 and passed what Lancaster described as the biggest test of the character yet.

Against both the All Blacks and Ireland, England faced moments when the momentum was against them and defeat seemed likely but in both occasions they rallied to win.

They did the same against France and withstood a late onslaught from Italy last week to tee up this shot at a slice of Grand Slam history.

Despite the collective disappointment with the performance against Italy, England's confidence in their own resolve remains intact and it fuels their belief heading to Cardiff.

"It is going to be a very tough physical battle, especially with what is at stake," Barritt said.

"This is a brilliant place to be. The amount of hard work that has been done since the team came together typifies what this team is about.

"We take a lot of confidence from what we have done, especially the game against Wales last year when we thought we were possibly the better team on the day.

"In the trip to South Africa, the experiences at the end of the autumn and in these consecutive wins, this team has learned a lot about what we need to do in international rugby.

"Without taking this next step, it would be a massive shame."


A model of a Neanderthal man on display at the National Museum of Prehistory in Dordogne, France
Richard Dawkins dedicated his book 'The Greatest Show on Earth' to Josh Timonen
newsThat's Richard Dawkins on babies with Down Syndrome
Arts and Entertainment
Eye of the beholder? 'Concrete lasagne' Preston bus station
architectureWhich monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Dinosaurs Unleashed at the Eden Project
Arts and Entertainment
Life and Style
This month marks the 20th anniversary of the first online sale
techDespite a host of other online auction sites and fierce competition from Amazon, eBay is still the most popular e-commerce site in the UK
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

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

Career Services

Day In a Page

Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape
eBay's enduring appeal: Online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce retailer

eBay's enduring appeal

The online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce site
Culture Minister Ed Vaizey: ‘lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird’

'Lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird'

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey calls for immediate action to address the problem
Artist Olafur Eliasson's latest large-scale works are inspired by the paintings of JMW Turner

Magic circles: Artist Olafur Eliasson

Eliasson's works will go alongside a new exhibition of JMW Turner at Tate Britain. He tells Jay Merrick why the paintings of his hero are ripe for reinvention
Josephine Dickinson: 'A cochlear implant helped me to discover a new world of sound'

Josephine Dickinson: 'How I discovered a new world of sound'

After going deaf as a child, musician and poet Josephine Dickinson made do with a hearing aid for five decades. Then she had a cochlear implant - and everything changed
Greggs Google fail: Was the bakery's response to its logo mishap a stroke of marketing genius?

Greggs gives lesson in crisis management

After a mishap with their logo, high street staple Greggs went viral this week. But, as Simon Usborne discovers, their social media response was anything but half baked
Matthew McConaughey has been singing the praises of bumbags (shame he doesn't know how to wear one)

Matthew McConaughey sings the praises of bumbags

Shame he doesn't know how to wear one. Harriet Walker explains the dos and don'ts of fanny packs
7 best quadcopters and drones

Flying fun: 7 best quadcopters and drones

From state of the art devices with stabilised cameras to mini gadgets that can soar around the home, we take some flying objects for a spin
Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

The midfielder returned to the Premier League after two years last weekend. The controversial character had much to discuss after his first game back
Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

British No 1 knows his consistency as well as his fitness needs working on as he prepares for the US Open after a ‘very, very up and down’ year
Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home