Warburton puts 2011 behind him

Date published: September 19 2015

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Wales captain Sam Warburton said the red card he received during the semi-final of the 2011 World Cup is now a distant memory, adding that it would have absolutely no impact on his or his team's campaign in 2015.

Warburton was sent off for a tip-tackle on France's Vincent Clerc in the 20th minute of what was possibility the nation's most important fixture in the history of the tournament.

Wales eventually lost that match 9-8 and the Welsh rugby fraternity has since been left with the thought of what could have been.

While, there were regrets about the incident itself, Warburton said it would not have any influence on how he tackles during this tournament.

"No, I put that to bed three years 11 months ago!" he said.

"Obviously when people mention it I'll think about it and if someone asks me about 2011 the first thing that comes to my mind is probably the red card,.

"Going into this one is a completely different scenario and that doesn't have any bearing on the way I'm going to tackle or anything like that.

"It feels like ages ago. To fans it probably feels like it's just around the corner, four years and the Rugby World Cup.

"But for me so much has happened since then individually and as a team and we've gone through so much, that experience almost feels like another lifetime ago."

Wales has a daunting assignment ahead of it during this tournament, as it will have to negotiate Pool A fixtures against England, Australia and a potentially tricky Fiji outfit.

There is a considerable amount at stake and Warburton is well aware of it.

"It wouldn't surprise me if there's an upset in there," he added.

"There are some difficult turnarounds for some teams as well. I wouldn't underestimate any team, Fiji are a completely different team from what we played against four years ago.

"They're going to be a real threat in the group.

The one team in that pool which remains an unknown entity is Uruguay. The flanker said his team would afford the Uruguay team the respect that it deserved, adding that nothing would be taken for granted at a tournament of this magnitude.

"We have to be respectful to Uruguay who will be more organised than in the past," explained Warburton.

"They've had a month together so will be more organised. No one knows what a good score is until a couple of teams play. It's quite a tricky situation.

"The main thing is you want to get a win and if you're in a bonus point situation great and after that we'll be foot down for 80 minutes."

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