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Johnson says defeat was 'brutal'

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Johnson frustrated by 'brutal' defeat

England boss Martin Johnson said his side had learned a "brutal lesson" after being handed a record home loss.

South Africa romped to a 42-6 victory at Twickenham in the first meeting between the two sides since the Boks won the World Cup final in 2007.

Johnson said it had been a "difficult and uncomfortable" game for England.

"We created plenty of chances but didn't take them all, but it's not about 'what ifs', on the scoreboard it's a heavy defeat," added Johnson.

"We created more try scoring chances than we have done in the first two games, we just didn't take them - our execution was poor in the final third."

606: DEBATE
Phil H - BBC Sport
Johnson said his players had given their all until the final whistle but admitted he faced a trying week ahead of next Saturday's match against the number one side in the world, New Zealand.

"It's about character this week. It's a question of getting heads up and all of us as a group getting on with the job," he said.

"They're our best players and we have to have faith in the guys we've got there.

"We're going to get sniped at by the media, and rightly so, but we have to take it on the chin, bounce back next week and play our hearts out."

International rugby is all about fine margins and we made too many errors

England captain Steve Borthwick

England captain Steve Borthwick said they were "tremendously disappointed" by the heavy defeat.

"The changing room is a very quiet place," added the Saracens second row.

"International rugby is all about fine margins and we made too many errors. Credit to South Africa - their work around the breakdown, their defensive work and the way they took their chances was a lesson to us.

"We want to be better and we want to improve. All we can do is work hard, study the tape of what happened today and put it right next week. We had plenty of ball, we've just got to use it better."

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see also
England 6-42 South Africa
22 Nov 08 |  English
Johnson is right man - Woodward
22 Nov 08 |  English
Sheridan to miss Springbok Test
20 Nov 08 |  English
South Africa forced into changes
20 Nov 08 |  Rugby Union
Scrum must 'step it up' - Mears
19 Nov 08 |  English
Flanker Haskell back for England
18 Nov 08 |  English
Jeremy Guscott column
17 Nov 08 |  Rugby Union
England 14-28 Australia
15 Nov 08 |  English
England 6-15 South Africa
20 Oct 07 |  Rugby Union


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FROM OTHER SPORT SITES
The Times Johnson hints at long-term plan - 38 hrs ago
The Times England manager drops hint at long-term plans - 41 hrs ago
Telegraph England recall James Haskell for South Africa clash at Twickenham - 47 hrs ago
Sky Sports Boks challenge excites Haskell - 48 hrs ago
Telegraph England recall Haskell - 50 hrs ago


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