Thursday 22 February 2018

I felt like a rock star, says Warburton after Welsh win

Sam Warburton, left, and Scott Williams celebrate Wales' Six Nations victory
Sam Warburton, left, and Scott Williams celebrate Wales' Six Nations victory

WELSH forward Sam Warburton said he felt like a rock star after his team mates inflicted a record 30-3 defeat on England in Cardiff to retain their Six Nations championship crown on Saturday.

"Walking around the ground with my winners' medal is something I shall never forget. The noise coming back from the crowd was immense. I felt like a rock star," Warburton told a British newspaper.

Wales swarmed all over England to finish level on eight points with the 2003 World Cup winners but comfortably ahead on points difference.

The hosts had needed to win by at least eight points to take the title, or seven provided England did not outscore them by three tries, and Warburton said he was always confident his side would achieve that.

"I always believed that we could beat England by the seven or eight points required to win the championship but to win by 27 was not something that anyone had seen coming," said Warburton, who led Wales to the grand slam in 2012.

"It was quite ruthless really. We never let our feet off the pedal at any stage. Everybody seemed to have their best games of the tournament."

Warburton said a short motivational video was shown to the team in the bus on the way to the jam-packed and buzzing Millennium stadium which ended with the message 'Our Trophy, Our Stadium'.

"That stuck in everyone's minds and then we walked into the dressing room to see the trophy itself sitting there on a table in the middle of the room.

"That was a surprise but again the message was strong and powerful. We realised: 'That is ours and England are coming here to try to take it off us in our back yard.' We would do everything to ensure that didn't happen."

England captain Chris Robshaw was left to pick up the pieces for his shattered side.

"There were a lot of heads down in the changing room afterwards and a lot of the guys were very upset. It was not a nice place to be," Robshaw wrote in his Telegraph column.

"As a group, we always talk about learning from the experience, whether it is good or bad, and there will be a lot of learning done after this result.

"That may be a hard concept to accept when the pain of the defeat is still so raw and we had to watch Wales lift the Six Nations trophy. But we have to learn from this. If we do not, then it will have been a bad day for us."

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