Rugby World Cup 2019: England's Ben Youngs calls on family experience to help beat All Blacks

If there is one man in the England squad who should have the inside track on how to beat New Zealand, it is halfback Ben Young. 

England have won just seven of their 41 tests against the reigning world champions, but two of those victories have featured various generations of the Youngs family.

Back in 1983 Nick Youngs, Ben's father, played in England's 15-9 victory at Twickenham.

Then seven years ago at Twickenham, both Ben and his brother Tom, starred in a 38-21 success - England's last win over the All Blacks.

Rugby World Cup 2019: England's Ben Youngs calls on family experience to help beat All Blacks

So is beating the All Blacks was part of the family DNA?

"The old man did it. Maybe? I don't know, we'll see," Ben said on Wednesday.

"Having that experience of playing them helps, having that experience of winning helps." 

Ben is in line for his 94th England cap on Saturday, while brother Tom's last international appearance came in the 2015 World Cup. 

Last November England were on fire as they led 15-0 but got pegged back to lose 16-15 - the only time the teams have met since Eddie Jones took over as England coach. 

"They kept coming back," Youngs added. "What you learn is the importance of how error-free you have to be, and you saw that again at the weekend - a couple of Irish mistakes and they are down at the other end scoring.

"It's about staying engaged and never clocking off. For me, they are the most dangerous team in the world at punishing you. Then they are physical. I don't think they get enough credit for how physical they are."

Another reason why England could not get themselves back into the lead a year ago was that they lost five lineouts in the second-half - their worst showing for seven years.

Most of the people involved in that set-piece on both sides will be facing up again on Saturday, with England conscious of how New Zealand beefed up their jumping power with the addition of a third lock for most of the second half.

Brodie Retallick was England's chief tormentor that day, and England's forwards coach Steve Borthwick holds him in the highest regard.

"He's a fantastic player, he has the ability to carry, tackle, is excellent in the set-piece and is a smart player," he said.

Borthwick, however, said there were no special plans to combat him or the prospect of a similar blitz, saying: "Of course you look at the analysis and factor that in to your game plan but our outlook is to focus on our team's strength.

Essential Guide to 2019 Rugby World Cup

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The ninth Rugby World Cup kicks off on September 20 in Japan - the first time it has been hosted in Asia.

Join us at 9pm Saturday for live updates of all the All Blacks v England Rugby World Cup semi-final.

Reuters

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