Botha - England on right track

Second row praises Lancaster influence

Last Updated: 08/02/12 10:54pm

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Mouritz Botha: England lock eyeing more success in Rome

Mouritz Botha: England lock eyeing more success in Rome

Sky Bet

Mouritz Botha believes England can go on to build "something special" after laying the foundation stones with last weekend's breakthrough victory over Scotland.

And the Saracens lock revealed how England's first Murrayfield triumph in eight years was inspired by the unlikely figure of pop star Lana del Rey.

The American singer's top-10 hit Video Games was playing as the England squad walked into the Murrayfield changing room - and everyone in the squad new what that meant.

Stuart Lancaster had used the song to soundtrack a motivational highlights video - one of the tools England's interim coach used to unite his new-look squad.

"The bond we have created is something that we showed on Saturday and it is building towards something special."
Mouritz Botha Quotes of the week

England battled to a 13-6 victory in Edinburgh and are now anxious to build on that gutsy performance against Italy in Rome this weekend.

"The bond we have created is something that we showed on Saturday and it is building towards something special," said Botha, who will be named in the England team when it is announced on Thursday.

"Stuart got it spot on with the build up of emotions. This song was playing in the dressing room as you walked in.

"It was the backing track to a highlights package that had been made for us featuring all the players.

"It made the hairs stand up. It gave you the feeling you are ready for this."


England's challenge now is to recreate that emotion and build on the performance this weekend in the imposing new surroundings of Italy's Stadio Olimpico.

"It will be a big battle," said Botha. "Italy are one of the sides which has made massive strides over the past few years. They are not a wooden-spoon team any more.

"At home in their new stadium they will be up for the challenge with 70,000 fans behind them.

"It was a brilliant occasion on Saturday at Murrayfield and to be facing something like that again will be a brilliant challenge.

"Initially we were really happy with the result last weekend but when you do your review in retrospect there are a lot of things to work on.

"Our work rate, character and defence overall were positive but when we rated our attack and ball retention we had really low scores.

"Those things we have to improve on. In attack we can offer a lot more."

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