Luther Burrell's impressive Saints form is set to be rewarded © Getty Images
Rugby News Burrell “thrilled” to fulfil England dream
With Saturday afternoon’s clash with France fast approaching, Luther Burrell can’t wait to win his first England cap and also credited his time at the Saints for helping him reach the goal.
Head coach Stuart Lancaster has openly rewarded form players and with after a superb 12 months in black, green and gold, Burrell will pull on a white shirt for his first full international appearance.
“I’m absolutely thrilled, it’s a dream come true,” he told the RFU podcast. “It’s something every young player dreams of doing so to finally get involved and get that first cap is fantastic and I’m really looking forward to the challenge.
“I owe a lot to Northampton. They’ve really taken on board what I’m about. I had a really difficult few years at my previous clubs but Jim and the coaches there have really worked hard with me to progress my game.
“I’m by far not the finished article yet, but I’m enjoying my rugby at the minute and it’s showing on the pitch.”
While there are few easy Tests in international rugby, they don’t come much bigger than a Six Nations trip to Paris. Burrell is more than aware of the dangers posed by a Fofana-Basteraud midfield combination, but is eager to get on top of the Frenchmen and his own nerves.
“I’ve got a huge amount of respect for France and their players with the amount of experience they’ve got. For me and the rest of the team, we’re really going to have to be on our game because we’re not going to get an easy path.
“Personally, Stuart’s just asked me to play my normal game and to stick to the game plan and structures. I do get nervous before most games - I think that’s something I’ve said before. It’s all about trying to stay as calm as possible though and not letting the moment get on top of you.
“The nerves normally go after I’ve had my first touch of the ball. Hopefully I can get out there, settle into the game and do the shirt proud. I’m really looking forward to it.”
You can see how Burrell and the remaining four Saints in England’s squad fare in the opening game of their Six Nations campaign straight after the Saints’ LV= Cup showdown with Saracens – the game being shown on big screens around Franklin’s Gardens from 5pm.