Hodgson: Get Carter
Charlie Hodgson has pin-pointed Dan Carter as the man England need to stop if they are to beat New Zealand in Auckland on Saturday.
Last Updated: 11/06/08 10:35am
Fly-half Charlie Hodgson has pin-pointed Dan Carter as the man England need to stop if they are to beat New Zealand in Auckland on Saturday.
Carter is widely regarded as the best No.10 in world rugby, and although he was disappointing in the 21-11 victory over Ireland in Wellington, it was his scything break that set up Ma'a Nonu's winning try.
And Sale star Hodgson knows that if he can prevent Carter man pulling the strings for the All Blacks again at Eden Park, then England have a chance of victory.
He told Sky Sports News: "If you give him half a sniff of a chance, then he is through. Obviously he created the opportunity for Nonu's try against Ireland.
"We have to make sure we are full focused on stopping him.
"I think that if you can stop Dan Carter then you can stop some of the ways the All Blacks. He is a massive part of the way they tick."
While Hodgson is focused on his battle with Carter, Wasps flanker James Haskell is relishing the chance to pit his skills against Richie McCaw.
There are few players who come close to the All Blacks captain, however Haskell believes his clash with McCaw will be a good marker of his own development.
He told Sky Sports News: "It will be interesting to see how far I have come as a player to compare myself against him and see if all the things I have learned from Shaun Edwards, Lawrence [Dallaglio], Joe Worsley and other guys have paid off."