Rugby World Cup 2015

Rugby World Cup 2015: Mike Brown says Leigh Halfpenny man to stop in Wales v England Twickenham clash

Halfpenny’s points were critical in the best of British and Irish rugby conquering Australia two years ago and Wales securing the 2012 and 2013 Six Nations titles.

Mike Brown has identified Leigh Halfpenny as the player England have to stop when they face Wales in their “group of death” at the World Cup.

The Red Rose full-back, who followed in the stud marks of Halfpenny in being named Six Nations player of the year, warned the goal-kicking ace would punish any ill-discipline at Twickenham on September 26.

“Leigh’s obviously a world-class player, he was a Lion and Lions’ player of the season so he’s going to be a massive guy to look out for when we play against Wales,” said Brown.

Halfpenny’s points were critical in the best of British and Irish rugby conquering Australia two years ago and Wales securing the 2012 and 2013 Six Nations titles.

“He’s a great goal-kicker so our discipline will have to be spot on when we play against them,” Brown stressed.

“But, for me, it’s just about focusing on my job for the team and trying to stamp my game on the pitch so that people like him can’t do what he wants to do against us.”

Brown hasn’t played since the Six Nations. He suffered a concussion during a sickening collision with Italy’s Andrea Masi at Twickenham on Feb 14.

The 29-year-old missed the loss to Ireland in Dublin but was allowed to return for the matches with Scotland and France.

But he suffered headaches following the clash with France in March and was only cleared of concussion symptoms a month ago.

“It hasn’t been ideal picking up an injury but that’s the nature of the sport we play,” said Land Rover ambassador Brown.

“It’s given me a bit of time to rest and relax but I’m back into training now and preparing for World Cup – we still have to go through a full pre-season together as a squad.

“I’m excited to get going and back into a bit of light training, and I can’t wait to get stuck into some more hard work. I’m massively excited, just like the other England guys are about this year’s World Cup in England.

“It’s an added bonus that it’s on our home soil.

“We’ve been building up to this for the last four years.”

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