Corry convinced England will improve

Martin Corry has backed England's players and coaches to recover from a Croke Park calamity and make an across-the-board improvement against RBS 6 Nations title favourites France. [more]

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Martin Corry has backed England’s players and coaches to recover from a Croke Park calamity and make an across-the-board improvement against RBS 6 Nations title favourites France.

Victory for the French at Twickenham on March 11 would need them leaving to beat Scotland in Paris six days later for another Grand Slam championship triumph.

England, despite suffering a record 43-13 defeat against Ireland, are still in the shake-up for silverware, but they will require a vast improvement after a Dublin debacle when their hosts scored four tries and dominated every key area.

Corry said: "Brian Ashton said afterwards there wasn’t a single area of the game that we came away satisfied with, and he is absolutely right.

"The improvement that we needed from the Italy game to the Ireland game wasn’t there, and we have to make sure performances and results like Saturday night’s are an anomaly.

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"We must get better, and we will have to improve across the board in a fortnight.

"We have the players and coaches in the set-up to do that."

Some of England’s flops will come under scrutiny more than others – former England stars Will Carling and Jeremy Guscott have already questioned Andy Farrell’s role at inside centre – while Ashton needs to address a seriously under-performing pack.

Ashton said: "We knew we would have to go up two or three levels, not to beat Ireland, but to compete against them, and we didn’t do that.

"We were on the back foot up-front. I am not taking any credit away from Ireland – I thought their forwards were magnificent.

"They looked a lot more physical than us, and they were more physical in the collisions. I feel there is a lot of work to do, but we already knew that."

Two England players who failed to last the distance – Gloucester full-back Olly Morgan (shoulder) and Sale Sharks flanker Magnus Lund (concussion) – will receive further medical checks this week.

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