Although England is currently the dominant country in the world, it was almost impossible to see the difference a year ago.
France beat the Red Roses repeatedly in the final of the Women’s Six Nations 2021 Final, while England stumbled.
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Although they retained the title, it caused them to change.
Louis Deacon, a former lock for England and Leicester, was appointed forwards coach in August.
The Red Roses have won record victories over world champions New Zealand and extended their winning streak to 21 consecutive games. They are now working towards a fourth Women’s Six Nations title.
Few teams have been able to challenge England as hard as France 12 months ago.
France will be the ‘ultimate testing’
Although the scrum is stronger than ever, England will not rest until they achieve perfection.
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They have won three of the six opposition scrums so far, lost two, and conceded three scrum penalties.
They have won 45 of their opponents’ line-outs and taken seven, with Wales being the only side that was able to take one back.
Deacon said that “the scrum had improved massively”, but believes that much will depend on England’s performance on their trip to France at end of the month, which many believe will be the Women’s Six Nations decider.
“My focus is on the World Cup”
England takes on Ireland at Leicester’s Mattioli woods Welford Road to continue their unbeaten streak in the Six Nations.
Deacon sees it as a homecoming in circumstances he could not have imagined.
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He was part of the coaching team at Coventry for the men’s Championship and was then called into the England setup.
He was able to earn 29 England caps and make 274 appearances for Leicester from 2000 to 2015, so it is not surprising that he coaches with the Tigers like his younger brother Brett.
Deacon said that playing for Leicester was his boyhood dream, but he has only one thing on his mind right now.
He says that the World Cup is his main focus and will begin in New Zealand on October 8.
“That’s my biggest goal at the moment, and I’ll do everything possible from now until then in order to give myself the best chance.”