Farrell Looking Forward To Challenge Of New Zealand In RWC
The Rugby World Cup is slowly reaching its gripping conclusion and this weekend will see the four remaining sides’ battle for a place in the final of the historic Japanese World Cup.
The event has captivated millions around the world, but for Owen Farrell, the preparation has been a significant part of their preparations.
The captain has been just as calm and level‑headed as he always is and has been. It has always been a trait that has ensured that he reaches his peak when he takes to the field.
“I probably try and take more of the emotion out of it because I need to be able to think clearly and make good decisions,” he said. “You want to be in control of what you’re doing. You don’t want your emotions to control you.”
If there has been one big worry with his captaincy, it is that he tends to bicker and snap at referees when they need careful canny management.
He also needs to be cautious with those rash high tackles, when he leads with his shoulder rather than his arms.
He says he has adjusted his technique over recent years to combat that. Has been easing himself into just the right mindset. The rewards have been reaped throughout the competition so far for England.
“Emotion is a big part of the game; it’s a big part of getting yourself in the right place to perform, for some more than others. But everyone’s a bit different in terms of the way they use that.”
Before the competition, Farrell spoke at length about how the squad wanted to make the country proud of them and not disappoint like they did in their home tournament just four years ago.
“I already know how good the nation is at getting behind the team at tournaments like this. We’ve all been one of those fans, whether it was for the football World Cup, cricket World Cup, you have seen the momentum that gathers back home, and I’m sure those teams were able to feed off that.
Hopefully, we can give them something to cheer about while we’re here.”
It would appear that Eddie Jones has already cemented his place as the manager for the foreseeable future after reaching the semi-finals; something that was the bare minimum that he needed to achieve prior to the tournament.
But, there is now hope that he can guide the country to a second World Cup triumph.
Jones himself has been raising the pressure on the All Blacks as he has stated that all the pressure for this fixture should be on them.
He said: “No-one thinks we can win. New Zealand talk about walking towards pressure – well, this week the pressure is going to be chasing them down the street.
“The busiest bloke in Tokyo this week will be Gilbert Enoka, their mental skills coach.
“They have to deal with all this pressure of winning the World Cup three times. It is potentially the last game for their greatest coach and their greatest captain, and they will be thinking about those things.
“Those thoughts go through your head. It is always harder to defend a World Cup, and they will be thinking about that, and therefore there is pressure.”
New Zealand remains the outright favourites to win the competition with South Africa, who face Wales on Sunday, the second favourites.
However, England could move to the favourites for the competition with a famous win over the All Blacks.
It will be a big ask for Jones’ side, but stranger things have already happened in this World Cup.