RBS Six Nations: Stuart Lancaster says England are mature enough to handle Wales

Last Updated: 12/03/13 10:34pm

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Lancaster ready for Six Nations decider

Sky Bet

Stuart Lancaster says that England's inexperience should not be an obstacle to them completing an RBS Six Nations Grand Slam against Wales on Saturday.

A victory in Cardiff will see England post a perfect record in the competition for the first time in 10 years.

Lancaster's tenure in charge has seen a fresh injection of youth into the national squad but the England coach thinks the new boys are mature enough to handle the pressure of such a huge showdown.

"There are a lot of players who haven't been to Cardiff before and played in the Millennium Stadium," Lancaster told Sky Sports.

"We've still got a pretty inexperienced group in that regard but what we have is a strong self-belief and a strong sense of character."
Stuart Lancaster

"We've still got a pretty inexperienced group in that regard but what we have is a strong self-belief and a strong sense of character.

Plan

"We need to make sure we give the players a good plan this week to beat the Welsh because it's a big old game and it was always probably destined in the stars."

England's Grand Slam hopes were almost derailed by the most unlikely of opposition as Italy threatened an upset before finally being seen off at Twickenham on Sunday.

Lancaster knows an improvement is needed if England are to avoid disappointment in Cardiff.

He added: "I don't have to remind the players that there were areas of our game which weren't good enough. We needed to take our opportunities to score points when they were there.

"We got the penalties, we got a 15-3 lead and we should have pulled away at that point but we didn't. We conceded a soft try and, credit to Italy, they grew in confidence.

"We picked up a couple of knocks but I though our character at the end - to defend for three minutes and concede only five penalties in the game was positive. We were pleased to come off the field with a win in the end."

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