BREAKING: Joe Marler held showdown talks with England boss Steve Borthwick - Ruck

BREAKING: Joe Marler held showdown talks with England boss Steve Borthwick

Joe Marler was on the verge of canceling his meeting with Steve Borthwick, a situation that almost prevented his recall to the England team.

However, he decided to attend and confronted the national coach with an unexpected statement: “I wanted to meet you face-to-face and ascertain if you’re being truthful.”

This unconventional approach caught Kevin Sinfield, the newly appointed defence coach for England, off guard, as he was also present during the meeting. Nevertheless, Marler’s bold move proved effective. The 33-year-old prop from Harlequins received assurance from Borthwick that he would be given an opportunity to participate in his third World Cup, breaking his year-long absence from international rugby.

Convinced that the message conveyed was genuine, Marler has since devoted himself wholeheartedly to the national team’s cause, exhibiting immense dedication and commitment ever since he joined the Red Rose training camp.

“I remember speaking to Steve when he first took over, and he needed to clear up where I was at,” Marler said. 

“I said I’ve been available the entire time, but I also understand I haven’t been playing well enough to warrant being picked.”

Marler added to BBC Sport: “Then it got to the World Cup alignment camps a few months ago and I was named in that along with everybody else. 

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“But the night before I said to my wife Daisy: ‘I’m not going to go. I don’t think I can do it, the body is not quite [right].’

“She said: ‘Are you having a laugh? You’ve got an opportunity to get back in, which is what you’ve wanted. At least hear what he’s got to say.’

“I got in the meeting and I said [to Borthwick] I’ve come here and I needed to look you in the eyes and see whether you had lied to me or not. 

“I said I needed to know whether it was a genuine opportunity to get in [his] World Cup squad or whether [he] just wanted [me to be] a bag holder.’

“Because if that is the case I would have [had] to give up and sacrifice quite a lot without any real pot of gold at the end of it, and there are other people who I think would prefer the experience.

“But I said if there’s a real opportunity to get in the World Cup squad, then that will be my purpose. I’m all yours, and I’ll give it everything I’ve got.

“He said to me: ‘Joe, there is a real opportunity that if you work hard, then you can make it into the squad.’

“He did caveat it by saying: ‘But you will have to run, and run, and run some more.'”

 England teammate says he and Owen Farrell dislike each other 

England fly-half Owen Farrell is never afraid of sharing an opinion or two – especially when it’s about someone he doesn’t particularly like.

#1. Dave Attwood

Former England lock Attwood has opened up on the latest RugbyPass Offload about his ongoing rivalry with Owen Farrell.

The Bath lock won the last of his 24 caps for England back in 2016, which could have a lot to do with his relationship with the current England captain.

He revealed: “On the pitch, I struggle a lot with Owen Farrell. We just don’t see eye to eye on a lot of things,

“He hates me with a passion. Despite my earthy roots, he thinks I am a posh c***. He hates that. I bagged rugby league once jovially. I was saying it to take the piss kind of thing, ‘a bloody sport for the peasants’. He f**kin’ hated it.”

“He had a bit of a shout at me and went off to the toilet and I followed him.

“We all had a drink or two after the game but we didn’t need to get carried away with this. I was in the urinal behind the door and he was three or four down and as I got in his dad walked in as well, he was coaching at the time. He was, ‘I don’t want to fuckin’ hear it’ or something like that and as he walked out he went to open the door and slam it into the back of me. There was like a stop on the floor so it hit the stop and almost clocked him back…

“We never really addressed it after that. That was where it started and it was like a drunken little bit of argy that went too far. He is an incredibly competitive athlete and he is also very f**kin’ good, he has got high standards. He is a very competitive athlete and in order to be that good, you have to flirt on the wrong side of competitive.

“So whenever we play each other there is always some element in the game where one of us is running at the other one or we are trying to bang each other. There always seems to be an element of that to it. I am sure he is like, I don’t even know that Dave is playing.”

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