Tipuric: Retaining title would be an added bonus
BEATING England is the first objective this evening while retaining the Six Nations would be a huge bonus – according to Wales flanker Justin Tipuric.
The aim and approach Wales take will mirror the one they adopted in grinding out a hard earned 28-18 victory over Scotland at Murrayfield last weekend.
Wales knew they were unlikely to rack up a large score to help their title aspirations because just beating the doughty Scots was going be hard enough.
And sure enough they went about their task last Saturday with a ruthless efficiency.
What a difference a day does indeed make because England’s narrow 18-11 win over Italy on Sunday has given the hosts the chance of pipping the Grand Slam chasers to the championship title if they win by seven points.
Despite this fact, the focus will no doubt be on victory first and foremost, as the Ospreys openside admitted.
“We are just concentrating on our job and trying to win the game, that’s the biggest thing,” Tipuric said.
“It is about making sure the scoreboard is ticking over. You can’t go straight out there and try to get a massive lead in ten minutes – it’s not possible.
“It is motivation whenever you play England, you want to win the game. Obviously, being at home as well, and trying to stop them from getting the Grand Slam is a major motivation.
“But it is not going to be easy. They are coming down having not lost a game all championship.”
Tipuric, 24, and ex-Wales captain Sam Warburton start a Test match together for the first time with the latter playing on the blindside instead of injured skipper Ryan Jones.
Warburton started on the openside last week but switched to six when Tipuric came on for the injured Jones in the 48th minute of last weekend’s win.
The partnership between the two old rivals was a resounding success.
“We push each other to try to be better,” Tipuric said.
“You want to make sure you improve every part of your game, and we are all doing our extras in that regard.
“I am not the biggest, so I have to tackle low otherwise I get run over. It’s back in school stuff where you have got to take the legs.”