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England's 2003 Rugby World Cup final winners: Where are they now?
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He said: "It's all very surreal. It's been a long four years but all the work, all the sacrifices and all the setbacks along the way have been worth it. Well worth it. H e and his front row colleagues were supposed to put the vulnerable Australian scrum under such pressure that Wilkinson would win the whole match with penalties. It didn't work out like that as the English pack, much to their bemusement, fell foul of the South African referee Andre Watson who penalised them on a number of occasions.
We had no idea what we were doing wrong. I still felt we had the edge in the scrums and that, however long the match went on, we would pull it off.
He left England for Australia to work as a scrummaging coach at Sydney University. If it really is just a dream then make sure I never wake up," he said.
Like Cohen, Thompson left Northampton for Brive but a spinal injury sustained in a tackle persuaded him to announce his retirement from the game in However, he regained fitness and confidence to such a degree that he reappeared for England in the middle of the front row in the World Cup.
He retired again the same year, thereafter basing himself in Dubai as a rugby analyst and sports ambassador. L ike his front row brothers, he was frustrated at times by the penalties England conceded at the scrum but was otherwise rock solid. It's a great day for English rugby and it's a great day for England. It's what dreams are made of. He was appointed a Deputy Lieutenant of Gloucestershire in E ngland's colossus spearheaded England's tournament charge.
It's been a long, long campaign and it's been hard, so very hard," he said. But after the Welsh game I started dreaming of this moment. That's when I realised we really could win the World Cup and that I might just be collecting the trophy. We knew we were the better team but we almost blew it. We just about held our nerve and that man Wilkinson did it again for us. He must have the best scriptwriter in the business.
This is what the RFU subsequently made Johnson and it was a match made in wishful thinking rather than heaven. The captain had no coaching or managerial experience and after England's premature ejection from the World Cup, a disastrous campaign from beginning to end, Johnson's reign as team manager was over. He has since taken to cycling and coaching younger players.
A heavy tackle by Wilkinson on replacement Wallaby stand-off Matt Giteau created a turnover for England which they seemed certain to exploit, by engineering a great overlap just short of the Australian line. Lewsey passed to Dawson who gave Kay a scoring pass.
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The lock knocked on. That was one of the reasons why it all worked. He tackled himself to a standstill until being replaced on 93 minutes. In any case we had a great replacement and I was very confident we'd get there in the end. It was only Flatley's marvellous goal-kicking that kept Australia in the hunt. He continued to work at his club, Saracens, as a business development manager and latterly with the academy. He is now team manager to Eddie Jones' England and can be spotted on the sidelines during matches.
S ome observers thought the England pack were over the hill and would not have the stamina to lift the World Cup. They cited the back row but Neil Back, Lawrence Dallaglio and Richard Hill helped England gain a crucial edge in possession, territory and the winning of rucks and mauls. We've learned how to win," Back said. At no point in that game did I think we were going to lose. In fact, I've been confident all year that we'd win the World Cup.
15. Glenn Metcalfe
He held various coaching posts after leaving Leicester and was Edinburgh forwards coach until when his association with top-flight rugby ended. He now works as a retail and nutrition entrepreneur, and is an ambassador to several charities. The try gave England a half-time lead. However, in the penultimate minute of extra time, Dallaglio was penalised for handling at a ruck and Flatley again responded with an immense kick.
What a remarkable match," he said. I was absolutely delighted to take part in such a momentous team occasion. We urge you to turn off your ad blocker for The Telegraph website so that you can continue to access our quality content in the future. Visit our adblocking instructions page. Telegraph Sport Rugby World Cup. Josh Lewsey.
Jason Robinson. Mike Tindall.