Owen Farrell looks to emulate England's cricketing heroes and start the World Cup with a bang
England captain Owen Farrell has rallied his players to start the World Cup with a bang and inspire a nation like the country's cricket heroes.
After four years of waiting, England kick off against Tonga on Sunday at the Sapporo Dome, where David Beckham scored a penalty in 2002.
They have named a fully loaded side and Farrell had wants his team to follow the lead of Ben Stokes and Co after a summer of English success.
Owen Farrell wants to continue England's summer of World Cup success with a win in Japan
He wants the England rugby team to inspire the nation, just like the cricket team did
'I already know how good the nation is at getting behind the team at tournaments like this,' said Farrell. 'We've all been one of them, whether it was the football World Cup, Cricket World Cup. You see the momentum that gathers back home and I'm sure those teams were able to feed off that. Hopefully we give them something to cheer about while we're here and get some momentum from it.
'Whenever a team gets to the knockout stages and built some momentum, the country goes mental for it. It does, and the football World Cup last year was a massive example of that. The Cricket World Cup again showed loads of momentum towards the end, the Women's World Cup was brilliant. To be part of that and to get that feeling would be special.' England enter the competition with high expectations.
England have named a fully loaded side for their opener against Tonga on Saturday
They won three from four of their warm-up games and they departed home shores with a simple message from Eddie Jones: this can change your lives.
Hooker Jamie George said: 'I think we are in the best place off any England team I have seen in a long time. That is why I take a huge amount of confident, I want to get going.
'I don't think the pre-season could have gone better in terms of the physical condition we are in.
'The boys are itching to go. We have been looking forward to this for four years.'