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Dan Biggar calls for the spirit of 2015 as Wales target Twickenham success

Wales players celebrate victory over England at Twickenham (David Davies/PA)
Wales players celebrate victory over England at Twickenham (David Davies/PA)

Dan Biggar believes Wales will need to replicate their “roll the sleeves up job” of a famous World Cup win seven years ago when they target Guinness Six Nations success against England.

That 2015 triumph at Twickenham remains the last time England were toppled on home soil by their fierce rivals.

It was an against-the-odds victory as Wales wiped out a 10-point deficit to win 28-25 despite losing injured trio Liam Williams, Scott Williams and Hallam Amos, and ending the game with scrum-half Lloyd Williams as an emergency wing.

Gareth Davies dives in to score a try against England at the 2015 World Cup
Gareth Davies dives in to score a try against England at the 2015 World Cup (Andrew Matthews/PA)

Biggar, among four starting XV survivors going back for more on Saturday, kicked 23 points and was the architect of a pool-stage victory that nudged England closer to the World Cup exit door.

“It was just a brilliant evening, a brilliant result, brilliant character and roll the sleeves up job,” he said.

“I think for any team going away and winning in places like Twickenham, you have got to really roll your sleeves up, and that is what we will have to do on Saturday.

“I remember we went back to the Vale (Wales’ training base), and I was straight in the cryotherapy chamber at 3am because we were playing four days later!

Dan Biggar helped kick Wales to victory at Twickenham in 2015
Dan Biggar helped kick Wales to victory at Twickenham in 2015 (Andrew Matthews/PA)

“In terms of that fight, that togetherness and resolve, it is really difficult to instil that in a team, and it has to come from within.

“We made a decision that night that we weren’t going to go away and let it slip. We decided we wanted to dig in as much as we could and get a huge win.

“We had to deal with a lot of injuries as well. I ended up playing the last 15-20 minutes at full-back and Lloyd Williams obviously had to come on to the wing. It’s crazy that it was seven years ago now.”

Biggar, who wins his 98th cap on Saturday, is no stranger to playing at Twickenham, but for a number of his colleagues – young prospects like Taine Basham, Dewi Lake and Jac Morgan – it will be a new experience.

“We realise it’s a very difficult place to go and win,” Biggar added.

“But I think what we’ve got in our group at the minute is a lot of players who don’t fear going to Twickenham because they haven’t had a huge amount of experience from it.

“We are going there as underdogs with England being at home and in pretty good form as well. It is positive that a few of us have managed to win at Twickenham, but we are under no illusions.

“The biggest thing for us is that we start well. The last couple of times we’ve played England at Twickenham we have been 15-3, 15-6, 20-10 down before half-time, and it is a really difficult task to claw England back.

“It is imperative that we start the game well and take it to England, as opposed to being on the back foot and coughing up a few cheap points.”

Even without the traditional England versus Wales rivalry, their latest meeting is vital in terms of both countries’ Six Nations title aspirations.

Victories last time out put them both back in the silverware mix following opening weekend defeats, but Saturday’s losers will likely be out of contention.

“There is absolutely no doubt it is a huge fixture in the calendar,” Biggar said.

“For me, if I am being brutally honest, it matters this weekend because it’s such a pivotal weekend in the championship.

“There is a massive amount on the fixture. These games mean a huge amount.”

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