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Last Updated: Saturday, 25 February 2006, 16:33 GMT
Voyce rejects defensive criticism
By Pranav Soneji

Tom Voyce catches a high ball against Italy
Voyce believes he has the all-round game playing at full-back

England utility back Tom Voyce believes he has the defensive game to stand up to the rigours of international rugby.

Questions had been asked about Voyce's tackling abilities, but the Wasps star insists his performances against Wales and Italy justify his inclusion.

"I didn't drop any high balls and managed to put in quite a few tackles against Italy," Voyce told BBC Sport.

"I didn't get the chance to attack against Italy, but I hope to get more chances against Scotland if picked."

Voyce is a doubt for the game at Murrayfield after having three teeth knocked out in the Premiership game with Bristol.

But he has already made an impact for England this season.

After replacing injured full-back Josh Lewsey 20 minutes into the 47-13 victory over Wales at Twickenham, he ran in the last of the home team's six tries.

Voyce, 25, has been playing most of his rugby on the left wing for Wasps this season, but he admits he has no real preference when it comes to the international team.

"I'm not really fussed whether it's at full-back or the wing, just as long as I'm on the team and do myself justice in my performance," he said.

"I enjoy playing at 11 because that is my favoured position, but then again I also enjoy playing at 15.

"My favoured position depends on how much game time I've been playing in each position. Both positions have a different structure.

"At full-back when the ball is kicked at you, you have the whole pitch to run back at while at 11 you only have a few angles to play with so it requires a lot more strategy.

"But I would like to think I can play both positions equally as well."

Tom Voyce in action for Wasps against Edinburgh at Murrayfield
Voyce was on the end of a 32-31 defeat against Edinburgh at Murrayfield

However, Voyce warned against complacency ahead the game against on Saturday, especially in front of a passionate Murrayfield crowd.

"I was up there two or three months ago with Wasps when we played Edinburgh," he said.

"Although the stadium wasn't packed, it was still a pretty hostile environment and we struggled up there.

"There are no easy games in this tournament and it's going to get harder for us.

"Although a lot of people expected us to beat Italy more convincingly, we built upon our first half platform and it showed through the amount of tries we scored in the second.

"We're looking to better our performances for the likes of Scotland, Ireland and France."




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