Lancaster takes key lessons home

Date published: June 23 2014

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England head coach Stuart Lancaster will be taking what he has learned from the tour of New Zealand back home after a 3-0 defeat.

England head coach Stuart Lancaster will be taking what he has learned from the tour of New Zealand back home after a 3-0 series defeat.

Lancaster's squad won the respect of the New Zealand public with their performances in the first two Tests, before fading away in Hamilton on Saturday.

Pinpointing the effective use of New Zealand's support runners as they ran in five tries, Lancaster underlined that England have to finish off more of their chances.

He also praised the support running of All Blacks scrum-half Aaron Smith, who scored two tries in the third Test.

“What they do better than us is that they finish those line breaks,” said Lancaster.

“And if you take Aaron Smith's tries he has that ability to pass quickly and track on the inside and the support lines are excellent. There are certainly some lessons to be learnt there.

“We must apply the lessons now and the players now know what it takes to win at the highest level.”

Lancaster did feel however that England's attacking play had improved over the last year, despite only scoring four tries over the three Tests compared to nine by New Zealand.

“Overall, our attacking play has developed well over the past 12 months,” added Lancaster.

“But we must use the pre-season well and start of the season, and encourage our top-end players to play with the intensity that they have just been through so when we get to the autumn series – against New Zealand, South Africa, Samoa, Australia – we hit the ground running.”

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