Harlequins scrum half Danny Care has warned England will fight fire with fire when Wales come calling at Twickenham on Sunday.
The 27-year-old bagged the decisive score – thanks to great work from clubmates Chris Robshaw and Mike Brown – in last month’s Six Nations triumph over Ireland at rugby HQ.
The win over the Irishmen means England can still win the championship, but they must avenge last season’s Grand Slam crushing defeat at the Millennium stadium to keep their hopes alive.
Head coach Stuart Lancaster’s men will have to counter the anti-English sentiments that drive their Six Nations rivals.
And Care is confident the squad has left no stone unturned in preparing for a fiery encounter.
“There is obviously a huge history between the two countries and we have had some great battles against Wales,” Care said.
“You know when you play Wales that they don’t like you, which you get used to as an England player.
“You relish that and look forward to the challenge.
“Any time you play for England it’s a great feeling, but with the Welsh you know they are coming for a battle. We are up for the challenge and looking forward to it.”
He added: “You hear a lot about how proud Ireland, Wales and Scotland are and we kind of get forgotten. I think we are an unbelievably proud country.
“Obviously Stuart has done a lot of stuff to reconnect everyone with grassroots rugby and see the heritage side of things, the lads who have played before us in the shirt and gave their lives in the war.
“We have gone on that journey, looked at stuff like that and seen how much it means to people still.
“We are playing for them and playing for the whole country.
“We are incredibly proud of putting on the England shirt and running out at Twickenham.”
Tries from departing winger Sam Smith and 19-year-old Harry Sloan saw director of rugby Conor O’Shea’s Quins battle back from a 13-3 half-time deficit to beat Worcester Warriors 21-20 at the Stoop last Saturday.
Leicester Tigers’ bonus-point win over Newcastle 24 hours later saw Quins – without a game this weekend – drop out of the Premiership’s top four.
* Danny Care was representing the England team at an event for QBE, official insurance partner of England Rugby. QBE is supporting the development of rugby through the QBE Coaching Club. Visit QBErugby.com