Varndell hoping to upset Aussies again

Leicester winger Tom Varndell is itching to get back to Australia on England's summer tour and cement himself a reputation down under as public enemy number one. [more]

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Leicester winger Tom Varndell is itching to get back to Australia on England’s summer tour and cement himself a reputation down under as public enemy number one.

Varndell was a star of the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne and, after winning his debut Test cap against Samoa, the 20-year-old is set to be included in Andy Robinson’s touring squad on Monday morning.

It would be the perfect end to a remarkable breakthrough season for Varndell, the leading try-scorer in the Premiership and a man Robinson described this week as the fastest man in the game.

Varndell revelled in the atmosphere at the Commonwealths, where England won silver, and he is ready to rile the Australians once again.

"They were very hostile towards us," he recalled.

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"The game we played against them was awesome, and I don’t think they liked me very much because I scored a try!

"But I quite enjoy getting booed. You see it as a sign of respect.

"I’d be more than happy to go back to Australia this summer and get the same reaction – because it will mean I have played in the Tests and upset the Aussies again!"

Varndell, named young player of the year at the Professional Rugby Players’ Association awards this week, has an old head on youthful shoulders.

"I look at Theo Walcott going to the (football) World Cup, and it will give him the confidence to believe he is one of the best players around," said Varndell.

"I have felt the pressures of expectation, but you have to remember you are in the game because you are good enough to be in the game. You shouldn’t feel anxious about the bigger events.

"I try and enjoy it. You are there because you are good enough. The players believe in you, and the coaches believe in you. I try and enjoy every opportunity I get."

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