England fly-half George Ford on how he prepares for a Six Nations game, how he deals with the pressure, team bonding and training.
Do you feel more pressure playing in the Six Nations versus Premiership Rugby?
Not really, no. I try and prepare and take every game I play in the same way. I want to go and perform in every game I get the opportunity to, so the pressure I put on myself is in the way I prepare in the week leading up to the game.
What's the hardest thing about playing in the Six Nations?
The Six Nations is a tough tournament to win, as you are playing 5 quality teams and need to pretty much win every game to win it. So I suppose that's the main challenge.
Is your diet very different at the Six Nations, and do you have much choice in what you eat?
No, I try and eat the same and keep my diet the same whether I'm in camp or at home. I think it's important to do that and not just change it up because you are in camp. We get fed very well in camp and every so often we will get a treat after a hard session.
What's the best thing about playing in the Six Nations?
The Six Nations is a great tournament to play in. You play against the best teams in the best stadiums, usually with the best atmospheres.
How do you wind down at camp in the Six Nations?
I tend to just chill by having a coffee or socialising with the lads.
Do you feel there's stronger camaraderie in the team during the Six Nations?
In every England team I've played in there is a strong bond because you want to perform and win for your country, and we are all very privileged to represent England.
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Do you watch the matches between the other competing nations during the competition?
Yes, I try and watch all the other games. I enjoy watching them anyway, but it's important to know what other teams are doing and also the trends of the game at that particular point in time.
Do you have a pre-match ritual to get you fired up for the game, or do you like to go in calm and amp up during it?
Not too much, no. I try and stay as calm and relaxed as possible to ensure I can think clearly and correctly on the field.
How does your training differ in the lead-up to the Six Nations versus Premiership Rugby?
The training in camp is always more intense than at Premiership level, but that's what we need to make sure we can play the way we want to play at international level.
The boys are demanding of each other because we want to improve and push our game forward as much as possible.
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