Scott Williams leaves England’s Mike Brown and Sam Burgess trailing in his wake at Twickenham. Burgess showed all the attributes of his rugby league background in what was England’s biggest game for eight years. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

I only started playing centre in 2004. It took until the 2007 World Cup before I felt properly attuned to the nuances of the position and comfortable (...)

Wales number eight Taulupe Faletau shows the England defence a clean pair of heels at Twickenham. Photograph: Glyn Kirk/AFP photo

England 25 Wales 28 Sometimes a game actually lives up the hype, and in this instance that’s really saying something. After nearly two years of(...)

Wales’ Gareth Davies dives in to score his side’s try in the Rugby World Cup Pool A match against England at Twickenham. Photograph:  Andrew Matthews/PA

England 25 Wales 28 Somehow, it actually lived up to the hype and the seismic sense of occasion. Maybe even bettered it. There’s bravery, and t(...)

 Rob Kearney scores against the All Blacks: “It’s very hard to find a weakness but they are beatable. Ireland players know this now.” Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho 5:12

So the million dollar question: should Ireland coach an offloading policy at this World Cup? I don’t think you can. You are either intuitively good(...)

It’s no fun having to tackle someone like Mathieu Bastareaud if he gets a 10-yard run on you. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Every World Cup has its own personality, a style of play that evolves the game of rugby. This year will be no different. We have already seen most of (...)

England’s speed at the breakdown allowed them to put pressure on Ireland’s backs, particularly Simon Zebo. Photograph: Afp

For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction; England’s one, two, three versus Ireland’s one, two, three, four, five – when punctuated wit(...)

England’s flanker Chris Robshaw  is tackled by Ireland’s  Rory Best and   Jack McGrath  during Saturday’s Rugby World Cup warm-up match at Twickenham. Photograph: Glyn Kirk/AFP/Getty Images

Twickenham makes England genuine World Cup contenders. Every other nation must enter this heady arena and seek victory. Ireland tried, Ireland failed(...)

Ireland’s flanker Peter O’Mahony wins the ball in the lineout during the international rugby union friendly match between England and Ireland, ahead of the 2015 Rugby World Cup. Photograph: Getty Images

Peter O’Mahony has admitted Ireland failed to cope with England squeezing Joe Schmidt’s game plan in 21-13 Twickenham defeat. Munster flanker O’Mahony(...)

England winger Jonny May celebrates scoring their first try during the World Cup warm-up  at Twickenham. Photograph: Clive Rose/Getty Images

One of a few positives coming out of Twickenham is the scoreboard. Only losing 21-13 to a rampant English team – with a powerful pack and dazzling win(...)

Ireland captain Paul O’Connell gets over for a try during the second half of the World Cup warm-up game at Twickenham. Photograph:  Dan Sheridan/Inpho

England 21 Ireland 13 The result may not have been terribly important but while this was the restorative win which was prescribed for England, it was (...)