Billy Twelvetrees and Manu Tuilagi look set to take on Ireland

Billy TwelvetreesBilly Twelvetrees storming debut for England yesterday has opened the way for him to partner Manu Tuilagi in a lethal centre partnership in Dublin next weekend.
The ageless Brian O’Driscoll had earlier inspired Ireland to an impressive victory over Wales in Cardiff.
And England head coach Stuart Lancaster will be aware that the muscular Tuilagi has given O’Driscoll problems when they have clashed in the past.
Lancaster said:  “We need to knuckle down to what will be a massive game against Ireland.
“With Manu coming back into consideration there will be some selection decisions to make across the board.”
Man-of-the-match Owen Farrell  kicked seven goals from eight attempts and set up a try for Geoff Parling with an exquisite long pass as England won 38-18.
Other tries came from Chris Ashton and Danny Care.
England attack coach Mike Catt saluted fly-half Farrell’s all-round performance.
“His mental toughness was very noticeable,” said Catt. “He was cool and calm under pressure and he attacked the line very well. We produced quick ball continually and we had the Scots on the rack.
“It gave the likes of Billy (Twelvetrees) and Brad (Barritt) the chance to get on the front foot. All credit to the forwards for giving us that type of ball.
“We look at putting the ball to where the space is and Owen did that.”
Lancaster,  delighted with the progress of his England side who beat the All Blacks  at Twickenham in December, added: “People underestimate how much it takes to pull together a cohesive team.
“Over the last 12 months we’ve had some ups and downs but we have learned as we have gone.
“The last two weeks have been invaluable in going over the lessons we learned in the autumn.
“We felt prepared going into the game and while we are not satisfied with everything I thought our cohesion was excellent and it has given us a foundation to go into Dublin.
“Clearly we will have to  step up for Dublin. Ireland are an outstanding side.
“We need to make sure we are ready physically, mentally and technically.”
Scotland interim coach Scott Johnson admitted his side were outplayed.
He said: “We were disappointing in the areas we need to work on.
“We can dream away about how we’d like to play but the reality is in the modern game, if you don’t get the contact area right, you can dream all you like, it’s fantasy, fairytales won’t come true.”
Twelvetrees savoured his debut try. He said: “I’m delighted to get out there and play in front of a great Twickenham crowd.
“I just wanted to do what I do for Gloucester every weekend. It was nice to get on the scoreboard.
“We wanted to continue the momentum we had in the autumn and we tried to stick to our game plan.”
Farrell said: “It’s important to keep the scoreboard ticking over. The boys work hard to get these penalties and it’s important to reward them by kicking them over.
“We played with real pace and tempo and I thought the intensity was good.
“But we can be hard on ourselves as well. There are plenty of things to work on.”
Farrell enjoyed the backing of the home crowd adding: “It’s brilliant. It’s what international rugby is all about and it’s why we love playing the game.”
Lancaster added: “I’m really pleased with the scoreline. I’d have taken that at the start of the day.
“We were a little loose on occasions but, overall, I’m pleased with the start.
“We have been building steadily and getting more consistency.
“That New Zealand game us a lot of confidence. Now we’ve got to continue to build on that.”
Lancaster was pleased with England’s persistence. “We knew that if we kept the pressure on Scotland they would struggle to cope with it in the last 20 minutes,” he added.
“We are delighted with the way  Twelvetrees got the try but his confidence and composure has been good all week. It shows he is ready to make the step.
“This time last year we had seven players making their debuts and with Billy making his we have a young side. We are bringing on 20-odd-year-olds and it is great for us as a squad.
Scotland captain Kelly Brown said: “They were able to play the game in our third and they won the gain-line, and if you are on the back foot and playing a lot of rugby in your half, it suddenly becomes very hard.”
One pleasing note for Scotland was the form of full-back Stuart Hogg, who set up Scotland’s first try and scored the second.
Johnson said: “It was the best game I’ve seen Stuart have in Scotland colours. I thought he did wonderfully, wonderfully well.
“It shows what a great talent he is and we like to get him in positions. You can ask me 1,000 questions, the reality is, yes, we can beat sides, we can look good. We’d like to look good more often.”
SAMUEL JACKSON

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