DESPITE pulling off a classic victory over the world champions, England scrum-half Ben Youngs admitted the squad was still “disappointed” after their All Blacks heroics.
In a statement which is quite telling about their mindset and quest for success, the Leicester man was adamant regrets remained.
Belligerent England racked up both their highest ever score and biggest winning margin of victory against New Zealand with their 38-21 masterclass nicely bookending their autumn series following an opening victory over Fiji.
But, in between, letting South Africa slipped past them 16-15 and losing by just six versus Australia still haunts Youngs.
“It’s a great result and we’re all really pleased with how it went but the overriding thing is we’re still disappointed,” he conceded. “We know it could have been four from four. I suppose that says a lot about this side and where we’re going.
“We know we let South Africa and Australia go but this (New Zealand) is the benchmark now.
“We got in a huddle at the end and said that; we need this again in the Six Nations.”
Youngs – who has 26 caps now despite still only being 23 – certainly reckons the future of Stuart Lancaster’s squad is bright, especially when he took time to analyse some data.
“We got here earlier than normal and I was just flicking through the programme beforehand,” he said.
“You look at the date of birth for all the boys and it’s ridiculous... ‘88 ‘89 ‘90 ‘91 and about five in ‘87.
“It’s an unbelievable achievement by everyone and I’m very happy as now I can finally shut my dad up. He beat the All Blacks and now I’m one up too which is great.”
Impressive England led 15-0 in Saturday but saw New Zealand fight back to 15-14.
“When they scored those two tries in the second half, if that was six months ago I wonder if we’d have crumbled or not?,” Youngs said. “It just shows how quickly we are learning as a side but we know now anything less than this and we’ll be under fire again.”