England star Billy Vunipola believes the Red Rose have what it takes to win the World Cup on home soil.
The Saracens forward was the star guest at Bury St Edmunds Rugby Club’s Greene King IPA International Rugby Sevens on Sunday, taking a break from his quest to erase the pain of last year’s dramatic extra-time Premiership final defeat to Northampton Saints.
And 22-year-old Vunipola, who was awarded the Forward of the 2015 Six Nations and this week signed a new deal with his north London club, is confident England can mount a strong challenge for the Web Ellis Cup from September 18.
“The World Cup is quite a scary topic as there are injuries and players coming back into form, so I will believe it when I am there,” said the player who has 16 caps.
“I think we have a very good squad at the moment and it doesn’t matter who gets picked or injured I am sure we can go into the tournament very confident we can win it.
“That is definitely something we want to do and we will try our best. Hopefully we can help rugby grow at an even more rapid rate.”
His Saracens side lost 24-20 in last year’s thrilling Premiership final, to deny them only their second league title in their history.
And Vunipola, who also praised Bury’s sevens tournament, said that pain will be their driving force.
“We have a massive game against Exeter at the weekend (home Sunday) and then London Welsh (away May 16) and hopefully that will take us into the championship and more than likely we will go to Bath and that will be a tough game.
“But if we do get to Twickenham, we have to write some wrongs that happened last year and I just hope we get that opportunity.”
n Log on to www.buryfreepress.co.uk to watch a video of Billy Vunipola talking about Bury’s sevens tournament.