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Saracens ace Alex Goode out to wrestle England jersey back off Quins rival Mike Brown

Alex Goode of Saracens. Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images Alex Goode of Saracens. Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images

By Charlie Talbot-Smith
Thursday, December 19, 2013
1:53 PM

Alex Goode is happy to concede that Mike Brown deserves his chance as England’s full-back, but the Saracens man has warned his rival that he is coming for his No.15 shirt in the Six Nations.

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A shoulder injury, and subsequent reconstructive surgery, ruled Goode out of England’s summer tour to Argentina, opening the door for Brown to prove his worth.

A star turn this summer and then a storming autumn where he was named as England’s player of the series means the Quins ace is now firmly cemented as the Red Rose first-choice full-back.

A far cry from the 2013 Six Nations when Goode started all five clashes, shunting Brown out onto the left wing.

And while it is not poor form that has let Brown in to take his No.15 jersey, the 25-year-old Goode is well aware that in rugby what goes around, comes around.

“Mike played really well in the autumn, credit to him,” he said.

“All I can do is put some form in between now and Six Nations and try and push him as hard as possible.

“This time last year it was the opposite way round which just shows you that things can change very quickly.

“You just have got to play well and make the most of your chances when they come your way.

“It’s disappointing [missing Argentina] but injuries always happen in this game, there are plenty of people worse off than me.

“I have got a long run of games under my belt now for Saracens but Mike has got the shirt now and it’s about me trying to take it off him.

“Ben Foden, Elliot Daly, the Arscott brothers [Tom and Luke] there is a lot of competition, but that’s what makes you a better player and hopefully makes us such a strong squad.”

Goode and fellow England international Billy Twelvetrees helped out with Southwark RFC, the only inner-city rugby club in London.

Goode and Twelvetrees led a coaching session and also played touch rugby on an urban wasteland in London’s east end as part of SSE’s Floodlight Reward Scheme.

And Goode, who came through the ranks at his local team Cambridge, gave his backing to a scheme that helps to promote the grassroots of the game.

“This is a great competition, the SSE Floodlight Reward Scheme is brilliant and I hope that as many people as possible get involved and enter the competition,” he said.

“Anything that helps grassroots rugby and encourages more people to get involved is fantastic.

“SSE are doing a great job here at getting more publicity and getting more kids involved.

To win the floodlights would be brilliant for any local rugby club, you can move them about, put them anywhere you want and even practice in your own garden with your teammates.

“Obviously there is not that much money in grassroots rugby, it relies on volunteers and parents putting their hands into their pockets.

“Any help that they can have is therefore much appreciated, to have reliable floodlights and have it paid for by SSE so credit to them and the help they are giving.

“I played at Cambridge from six to 16, it helps you develop as a player but its all about being with your mates and enjoying yourself.”

• Alex Goode was speaking on behalf of Official Community Partner of the RFU, SSE, who is giving English rugby clubs the opportunity to win a £10,000 portable floodlight. To enter go to www.SSERugby.com

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