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No holiday fun with defeated Johnno

Furious Martin Johnson admitted he will not be great company on his family holiday this week as he picks through the bones of England's 19-9 defeat to Wales.

Johnson was bristling with frustration after England's Rugby World Cup preparations stalled at the Millennium Stadium with a performance devoid of invention and intelligence. The bad news for his wife and two children is that Johnson is on holiday this week, ahead of finalising England's 30-man World Cup squad next Monday.

"It is a good time for a break (but) not with me," said Johnson, who expects to still be as angry when the squad meet up again next Sunday.

"We should be frustrated. This was the strangest Test match I have seen in some ways, to be so dominant for 40 minutes. We have just got to land the killer blow.

"We made 12 changes and lots of players were getting their first starts in a while. There is more to our attacking game, there is more fluidity.

"It hasn't shaken my belief because if we hadn't done anything, if we hadn't dominated a large part of the game and created the chances then you would be disappointed. It is just frustrating.

"We had a chance to win a Test match comfortably. We didn't do it. I don't think anyone is particularly happy."

"The players make the decisions out there but ultimately we have got to get points on the board. We went into the game to play a Test match. At some point, you have got to score points.

"Hopefully the coaches will assess everyone over the whole eight week camp. We are aiming to peak in a couple of months' time. We have time to right those wrongs."

England face Ireland in their final warm-up match in Dublin on August 27. Their World Cup campaign begins against Argentina on September 10.


From Belfast Telegraph