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England complete rugby 2011 World Cup preparation with a win

England completed their preparation for the rugby 2011 World Cup with a convincing 20-9 win over Ireland yesterday in a fiercely competitive match.

Tuilagi was undoubtedly the stand-out player for large parts of the game with a series of fantastic tackles and also one of only two tries to feature in the game. Tuilagi's promising performance however came at the expense of Ireland and more specifically flanker Wallace who had to be stretchered off after a strong but fair tackle from Tuilagi. It wasn't great viewing for the Irish fans who not only saw a player have to be stretchered off but also endured watching their team be condemned to the fourth straight loss in a row which doesn't bode well for the upcoming World Cup.

For England, preparation couldn't go much better with the team performing well as a unit and showing glimpses of class which will serve them well in New Zealand. Ireland however will have to improve significantly if they are to truly challenge in the World Cup, four straight defeats won't fill coach Kidney nor the fans with much confidence at all. But competition rugby is a totally different game in many respects and as previous tournaments have shown, anything can happen.

Ireland's World Cup campaign begins against USA on September 11th whilst England travel to Dunedin to face Argentina a day earlier. Both teams will of course be looking to lay down solid foundations to build upon in their own pools and set the pace for the other teams to follow. Make sure you follow all the action in what will inevitably be a fascinating tournament in the beautiful nation of New Zealand.

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