Flood: No scars from Slam loss
April 8, 2011
Toby Flood will spearhead Leicester's challenge in Dublin © Getty Images
Toby Flood will put the hurt of England's Grand Slam implosion behind him when Leicester face Leinster in the quarter-finals of the Heineken Cup at Lansdowne Road on Saturday.
The fly-half, and Tigers team-mate Ben Youngs, endured a miserable outing in Dublin on March 19 as Ireland stormed to a 24-8 victory, wrecking England's hopes of a first clean sweep since 2003.
Flood believes that the lessons learned from that match will stand him in good stead ahead of another crunch encounter in the Irish capital, a re-run of the 2009 final.
"You have a huge amount of disappointment and you ask questions about yourself in terms of what you are doing," he said. "We had been playing some nice stuff and I just think we let ourselves down in that game.
"It was our first taste of that for a long time and we let ourselves down, myself included, but you have to deal with it - you have to move on. There's not been a question of me lying awake at night questioning what I'm about though. If anything it's made me determined to be better. It's nice to go back. Sometimes it's good to get back and get involved."
Flood is anticipating a nip and tuck affair this weekend, but is confident that Leicester have the game-plan in place to withstand a barrage from their hosts.
"Leinster are very similar [to Ireland] having seen the videos this week of how they play. They have got the same sort of defensive strategy of how they hold you up in the tackle and try to win the collisions.
"We have to be ready for that physical challenge because it is going to be pretty hectic in the first 25 minutes. We want to make this game really tight and try and win a one-score game. That is our ambition. We want to keep it really tight and really try and turn the pressure on in the last 10 minutes."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
From Burgess to Boudjellal, Haskell to Honey Badgers and retirees to Retallick, here's the Quotes of 2014
It was another bumper year of rugby action in 2014; join us as we take a look back at some of the season's top statistics
Salary caps, Saints, sinners and scrums - Monday Maul looks back at the key talking points from an eventful weekend