Moody on a mission in must-win clash

LEWIS Moody will be on a mission to sap the energy of Tonga's highly-rated forwards when England fight for World Cup survival tomorrow night.

By The Newsroom
Thursday, 27th September 2007, 7:14 am
Updated Thursday, 27th September 2007, 8:56 am

Tonga, who stand between England and a quarter-final place, have already seen off Samoa and America, while they were only a converted try away from stunning South Africa.

And the Pacific Islanders’ pack has been key to those results, suggesting England face a punishing encounter at Parc des Princes.

Leicester flanker Moody, back for his first England start since the demoralising Twickenham defeat against Argentina 15 Tests ago, will be critical to stopping the Tongans’ possession supply at source.

Moody said: “The most important thing is we put our attitude, our mark on the game in the first 10 minutes like we did against Samoa last Saturday.

“That makes a huge difference. It takes away their confidence, energy and enthusiasm - it drains them a little bit.

“As a forward, you have got to work hard and wear them out.

“Across the board, Tonga have got more talent than they’ve had in past years, and they are showing that with the way they are playing.

“They are going to prove a massive challenge.

England: J Lewsey (Wasps); P Sackey (Wasps), M Tait (New castle), O Barkley (Bath), M Cueto (Sale Sharks); J Wilkinson (New castle), A Gomarsall (Harlequins); A Sheridan (Sale Sharks), G Chuter (Leicester), M Stevens (Bath), S Borthwick (Bath), B Kay (Leicester), M Corry (Leicester, capt), L Moody (Leicester), N Easter (Harlequins).

Replacements: L Mears (Bath), P Vickery (Wasps), L Dallaglio (Wasps), J Worsley (Wasps), P Richards (London Irish), A Farrell (Saracens), D Hipkiss (Leicester).