Graham Rowntree believes England can end Ireland's Grand Slam hopes

Last Updated: 22/02/14 8:55am

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Graham Rowntree: Believes England have the desire to beat Ireland at Twickenham

Graham Rowntree: Believes England have the desire to beat Ireland at Twickenham

Sky Bet

Graham Rowntree insists England are determined to end Ireland's Grand Slam hopes when the two nations collide at Twickenham on Saturday.

England are looking to build on their 20-point victory over Scotland at Murrayfield in their last game after suffering a narrow defeat in their 6 Nations opener against France.

Ireland, who boast a side with much greater international experience than England, start the match as favourites but Rowntree is backing his players to shine this weekend.

"You have to respect people's caps and what they have achieved in the game," forwards coach Rowntree said.

"You have to cover your opponents' traits in terms of analysis, but ultimately it is about us and what we bring.

"We won't be over-awed, we will be ready. The players have been in camp for two weeks since the Scotland game and they are ready.

"They are hungry and desperate to perform. We want them to go out and be fearless, but understanding what their opponents can bring to the game.

"We have seen how Ireland are playing and we have to cover all their threats."

Meanwhile, Courtney Lawes says he is relishing battling against Ireland's Paul O'Connell on Saturday.

"Paul obviously brings a great deal of physicality but, over and above that, his leadership and the fact he's so experienced make him very influential," the 24-year-old said.

"He's a leader for Ireland and he's very much a talisman for them, so he'll be looking to put pressure on us at the line-out and also around the park.

"He's a very diligent player and he'll certainly have done a lot of research on us."

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