Hodgson sympathises with Parks
February 5, 2012
England celebrate Charlie Hodgson's score © Getty Images
England's Calcutta Cup try-scoring hero Charlie Hodgson has expressed his sympathy to fellow half-back Dan Parks after the Scotland fly-half endured a torrid time at Murrayfield on Saturday.
Hodgson's second-half try proved to be the difference between the two sides in what was a nip-and-tuck affair at Murrayfield with England eventually prevailing 13-6. But Parks' role in the Saracens fly-half's try will be remembered as a key aspect of the match with Hodgson's charge down of the Glasgow half-back's clearance leading to the England score.
But although Hodgson's name will go down in the history books as the sole try in Saturday's clash, the Sarries half-back has revealed that he had been practicing the charge down in training.
"It's not that it's a major part of my game, obviously, but I've been working hard back at Saracens at putting pressure on the opposition and today it all worked out," Hodgson told the Daily Mail. "Of course I know exactly how Dan feels in that situation, because I've been there myself. I know the pressure he's under.
"I really do feel a bit of sympathy for Dan, because I know how it feels. Every fly half's had a kick charged down. That's the way it goes though, and sometimes you've got to just try and take advantage of it."
And Hodgson - who at the age of 31 was the second-oldest player in the squad behind Tom Palmer- praised the new coaching regime headed up by Stuart Lancaster.
"It's nice to get a try, of course but it's about more than that," Hodgson said. "We've come up here with a lot of new faces, with a very fresh squad indeed, and to be able to do what we did today was good. It's a big day, a big occasion. Stuart's given a lot of guys the opportunity to stake a claim, and I think they showed that they're making the most of it.
"It's a good start, yes. It's a win, but let's not get carried away yet. It's just a start, and there's a lot of hard work to be done."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
The controversial tackling technique will be in full swing in Dublin on Sunday, writes Conor O'Shea, and could be a decisive factor for Ireland
"This team deserves to be recognised as the greatest of all time." Huw Richards looks at Gareth Edwards' final match for Wales
The two leading contenders for the best modern open-side flanker go head to head in Paris on Saturday. John Taylor assesses the tale of the tape