Tait focused on Falcons
Mathew Tait is hoping a return to action for Newcastle can erase the memory of England's defeat in the World Cup final.
Last Updated: 30/10/07 5:17pm
Mathew Tait is hoping a return to action for Newcastle this weekend can take his mind off the World Cup final.
The talented 21-year-old played a leading role in helping England reach the final in France, where they were beaten by South Africa.
That defeat in the Stade de France is only just sinking in for Tait, who admits it was disappointing for the whole team to fall at the final hurdle after they had put in so much hard work.
Now the versatile back - who could well be wearing the 15 shirt for Saturday's home clash with Newport-Gwent Dragons - is hoping he can help the Falcons soar to cup glory.
"It has been a privilege to be involved in a World Cup final," Tait told Sky Sports News.
"The disappointment of that is just starting to sink in now because I suppose the surreal nature of the whole event has now worn off.
"It's something more in the past couple of days you realise how big an achievement it was to get that far, yet not come away with anything.
"You're involved in sport to win things and we didn't do that. That's certainly going to be a motivating factor for me and guys like Toby (Flood) up here.
"I've just got to get on what it and my focus is now the EDF Energy Cup and Newcastle."
Despite England upsetting the odds and reaching the final, particularly after their 36-0 loss to the Springboks in the Pool stage, some players in the squad have come out and criticised coach Brian Ashton.
Senior duo Lawrence Dallaglio and Mike Catt have both questioned Ashton's management style in their new autobiographies released after the tournament.
However Tait refuses to be drawn on the issue, adding: "Guys are entitled to their views and I'm not going to conment on that.
"My focus is purely on this weekend and putting in a performance for Newcastle."