England coach Andy Robinson admitted his young side need to find a ruthless streak after they succumbed 34-3 to Australia in the first Test in Sydney.
Full-back Iain Balshaw had a mixed game in attack and defence
"The game is about getting over the try line but the opportunities we created, we bombed straight away," he said.
"We have to learn to be more ruthless. I felt that when we had the ball and we were running the ball, we were sloppy."
Skipper Pat Sanderson added: "It's pretty disappointing but the things we did well, we can do better next week."
Robinson said he was "really pleased with the ambition and our ability to open Australia up".
"I thought we rattled them in defence - but you have to take your chances," he added.
I am still confident we are moving forward
"There was some great scramble defence by Australia, and whenever they got in behind us, they took their chances well. When we get behind sides, we've got to take the chances."
Despite the setback, his ninth defeat since becoming coach and England's third-heaviest against Australia, Robinson insisted his side were on the right track.
"We have to keep our nerve and believe in what we are trying to achieve," he added. "I am still confident we are moving forward and in what we are trying to achieve."
Sanderson echoed that view. "I don't think we are far off, but we have got to do it for 80 minutes and be merciless with any chances we get," he said.
"We made a couple of breaks we should have finished, and we could have gone in at half-time after scoring 17 points. We will learn from our mistakes."
We all realize we can certainly get much better
Australia coach John Connolly
Australia coach John Connolly was relieved to come away with a victory in his first game in charge, but thought "the result perhaps flattered us a bit".
"Overall, I am happy with the result and the performance," he said.
"It was a step into the unknown for all of us and I thought the players responded very well.
"But we all realize we can certainly get much better."
Australia captain George Gregan was also happy after the Wallabies' opening outing of the season.
"There is a bit of rust there, which is always the case in the first Test match of the season," he said.
"But the attitude was great and the commitment to the task was good. It's something to work from."