Michael Cheika switches his focus to next challenge against Wales

Australia coach not getting carried away by his side’s superb win over England

As England coach Stuart Lancaster and his captain Chris Robshaw fronted up the media at the post match press conference, down the corridor the English players, with the exception of one starting player Tom Wood, refused to speak.

World Rugby will issue a fine but it will be a trifling censure in comparison to the sense of relief at escaping a tooth-pulling post mortem.

English RFU Chief Executive Ian Ritchie was paraded in Bagshot to address the media on Sunday morning.

“This isn’t a time for any knee-jerk reaction.

“This isn’t a time to rush into things, it’s a time for calm, rational, considered reflection about what can we learn, how can we move forward, what can we do to improve, and we’ll only do that in a calm, considered and rational manner.”

No triumphalism

But Australian coach

Michael Cheika

was calm and rational in the wake of a wonderful victory. There was no triumphalism or basking in the achievement of the toppling the tournament hosts.

The former Leinster coach expressed his delight at the result before adding about the performance: "It wasn't perfect, there are still a lot of areas that I think we can improve on, but the commitment was very good and I will be asking for more of that going forward.

“We really wanted it, really wanted to play well, were hungry to get into it and play as hard as we could. We knew there would be a lot of pain. We were in England’s backyard, the atmosphere was outrageously loud and that’s not an easy thing to deal with when you are in the minority.

“You have not only got to keep your opponents out of the game. You have got to keep the crowd out of the game and that was a tsunami out there. We had a dark period in the second half about 10 or 15 minutes and I think we managed that better than we have done in the past. We were able to come though that and get back into the game towards the end.

“One of the English players said they wanted to come and hit us hard in the first 20 -minutes. They told us that so we had to be ready for it. We had to come back with some; if that was the strategy we had to negate it.”

Cheika expressed his satisfaction with Australia’s scrum dominance that yielded a host of penalties. “‘Mario (Ledesma, scrum coach) has taught me this; the scrum is a very humbling part of the game because you can dominate one and get your pants pulled down in the next one. You have to try to be consistent.”

When asked to speak about next Saturday’s mouthwatering clash with Wales at Twickenham that will decide the pecking order in qualification terms, the Australian again preferred to focus on the practical rather than the abstract.

Very successful

“This whole journey is about ourselves and where we have come, from maybe 12 months ago. We still have so much to do and we are coming up against the master coach (Warren Gatland) next week. He knows how to manoeuvre things around. He is very successful in what he does.

“We just have to keep doing it, stay real, be humble and get on to the next day’s preparation and try and improve.

“The approach doesn’t change, we just keep going; it’s a day-by-day thing for us.”