The Fisher Files

Back in the swim for the semi-final stages

London Irish youngster John Fisher reports from the IRB Junior World Championship

Beating Australia on Saturday was exhausting: 80 minutes of pure intensity, a sharp welcome to the business end of the IRB Junior World Championship. A strong feeling of belief now radiates from within the team. It is testament to our levels of fitness and mental strength that we were able to snatch the win from Australia during the dying minutes.

As I have said previously, when a moment of magic is needed, we are in a good position having 26 players in this squad who are fully capable of providing the match-winning spark.

However, it just so happens that one guy does it slightly more often so far. The winger in question has confided in me that he is tiring of all the media attention he receives and is worried he is slowly becoming the Beckham of international Under 20 rugby, so for this article we will obey his wishes and he will remain nameless.

All I can say is that he plays for Worcester and scores far too much.

Joking aside, the win against Australia is now a distant memory. South Africa are next on Wednesday night at Cardiff when they will look to impose themselves physically and I expect we will be confronted by 15 abrasive individuals dressed in myrtle green.

It is a mouthwatering prospect for this England team. To have beaten one of the Southern Hemisphere giants, we now, four days later, have an opportunity to take another scalp.

Having spoken to some friends who watched the game on television, it is clear that we are unappreciated in some quarters. However, there is something very businesslike about this team.

We have a lot of guys who are quiet, go about their business in their own way, and do the job which is required of them. That, it would appear, is a recipe for success.

Monday was an opportunity to rest and in the morning, I made use of the hotel pool in order to try to regain some mobility after being involved in what was an organised car crash on Saturday afternoon.

I entered the pool around 11am only to be confronted by around 30 older citizens. I was interrupting an aerobics class which takes place in the water but managed to swim about and get the job done.

However, in the changing room I was confronted by one of the aerobic athletes who was adamant, having seen us having our team photo taken in the car park earlier, that we must have had more players and back room staff than allowed and that was why we had won. Hostile, to say the least!

Looking forward to the semi-final on Wednesday, it is another must win game. I can guarantee that we will be thoroughly prepared, having covered all the situations we may face in the training sessions leading up to the game. It is now time to reach the final.