Flood castigates ‘shameful’ England as Wales put huge dent in morale

ENGLAND fly-half Toby Flood has admitted his shame at Saturday’s World Cup warm-up defeat to Wales, calling the performance “embarrassing”.

The visitors were beaten 19-9 at the Millennium Stadium in the last match before Martin Johnson picks his final 30-man squad, despite enjoying the lion’s share of possession.

Flood said: “I don’t want to use the word embarrassing, but it is a little bit embarrassing. It hurts, the fact we couldn’t score a try. It is shameful. We can use harsh words because if you want to win a World Cup, tries are massive.” The Leicester No10 has borne much of the criticism for England’s failure to turn territorial dominance into tries – an indictment he feels is even more damning than the scoreline.

“I am not too fazed about the result. It is insignificant compared to the fact we haven’t been able to score a try,” Flood added.

“That is the hardest thing for me. That left us in a position where we think there is a lot of work to do over the next two weeks. We won’t get that many opportunities in the World Cup. We have got to be more clinical there. There are a lot of things to work on. We are really disappointed and frustrated.”

Johnson’s players are set for a nervous week, with the manager set to inform those in the current 40-man party who have not made his final cut by the weekend. The England manager will name his final 30 in seven days’ time, before a final warm-up against Ireland.

D Cole, A Corbisiero, A Sheridan, M Stevens, D Wilson; D Hartley, L Mears, S Thompson, L Deacon, C Lawes, T Palmer, S Shaw, T Croft, N Easter, J Haskell, L Moody, T Wood, D Care, B Youngs, T Flood, J Wilkinson, R Flutey, S Hape, M Tindall, M Tuilagi, C Ashton, M Banahan, M Cueto; D Armitage, B Foden