Haskell relief at England victory

England celebrate at the final whistle. Pic: Julien Behal/PA Wire.

England celebrate at the final whistle. Pic: Julien Behal/PA Wire.

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JAMES Haskell was relieved his second-half sin-binning did not cost England the chance of an historic RBS 6 Nations victory over Ireland in Dublin yesterday - but he had feared it might.

Haskell was shown a yellow card for kicking the ball out of a ruck just as Ireland were beginning to crank up the pressure and Ronan O’Gara kicked the penalty to bring the scores level at 6-6.

The sin-binning proved to be a turning point - but in England’s favour because they won that 10-minute period 6-3 with Owen Farrell kicking two more penalties as they won 12-6.

“I think my life probably flashed before my eyes (when I was yellow carded),” Haskell said. “I thought if we lost the game I would have to run straight out of the stadium!

“I was disappointed it was a yellow card. I didn’t intentionally kick it but it was the third penalty in a row and someone was going to get it.

“The fact we won that period is credit to those on the field. I was just glad I got the opportunity to go back on. That victory was very big.”

England had not won a Six Nations game in Dublin for 10 years, since Martin Johnson’s team clinched the Grand Slam before going on to win the World Cup.

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