Fraser Dingwall insists England will move deeper into the Guinness Six Nations emboldened by the knowledge they can dig out wins if they they stick to the script.
England stride into the first fallow week after recording victories over Italy and Wales that keep them in title contention, albeit with the toughest assignments of the Championship still to come against Scotland, Ireland and France.
On both occasions they were forced to fight back from half-time deficits and while they prevailed by a combined total of only five points, amid the deficiencies Steve Borthwick’s new-look team have shown resilience and more ambition in attack.
— England Rugby (@EnglandRugby) February 10, 2024
Both wins were too close for comfort and Scotland will justifiably be confident of retaining the Calcutta Cup in a fortnight but Dingwall, who dived over for a crucial try at Twickenham on Saturday, insists belief is growing.
“This results against Wales will give us a massive boost because it shows that if we put on to the pitch what we want, then we can beat teams,” the Northampton centre said.
“In the first half we didn’t get the outcomes but we stuck at it, so we can go into each game with that intent to stick at what we want to do and knowing that if we do that, we’ll be OK.”
England made an impressive start to the round two match against Warren Gatland’s men but their entries into the 22 failed to produce any points and their prospects then deteriorated when Ollie Chessum and Ethan Roots were sent to the sin bin.
Wales seized control through a penalty try and a brilliantly constructed touchdown for Alex Mann – but with Ben Earl powering over from a scrum and then Dingwall crossing, the stage was set for George Ford to kick the match-winning penalty.
“We actually did a lot right in the first 10 minutes and then momentum swung against us and we didn’t really get anything,” Dingwall said.
“We put on the pitch what we wanted, we just didn’t get the outcomes and that’s what frustrated us.
“We stuck at how we wanted to play and then the rewards started to come our way and we were able to turn that into points.”
England’s kicking game directed by Ford was key to their comeback, as was Dingwall slipping over in the left corner in the 63rd minute for his first try in two outings in a Red Rose jersey.
“Essentially the forwards were battering the door down and created space, so we as backs just had to pick it off,” he said.
— Guinness Men's Six Nations (@SixNationsRugby) February 10, 2024
“I just managed to put myself on the edge. I kept Elliot Daly inside me knowing the ball would end up with me and I could hopefully get the score.
“It’s all bit of a blur but the emotions that ran through me after were crazy, everything came out of me.
“It’s unbelievable. These whole couple of weeks have been unbelievable. To get the win as a group and to score as well has been a whirlwind.”
England hope hooker Luke Cowan-Dickie, centre Manu Tuilagi and second-row George Martin will be in contention to face Scotland at Murrayfield on February 24.