South Africa drubbing made us stronger, says England’s Marler

HARLEQUINS prop Joe Marler believes England are ready to “hammer” their opponents in this month’s internationals, having emerged stronger from a hiding of their own in the summer.

Marler, who is set to win his fourth cap on Saturday against Fiji, cites going 22-3 down to South Africa in the second Test in Johannesburg as the crucible in which their spirit was forged.

“That 20-minute period was a turning point in the tightness of the group and the guys coming together as a team and wanting to dig deep for each other in the darkest places,” he said.

“Physically it is a massive step up and you know that if you are not on your game they will just keep coming and keep coming. That is the sort of attitude we have in our group. We just want to keep hammering the opposition, keep going, keep going because if they ease off we will take the chance.”

England’s clash with Fiji precedes fixtures against Australia, South Africa and New Zealand.