Lawrence Dallaglio gives his verdict on England's defeat by Ireland.

The prospect of an English Grand Slam will have to wait for another year and, after the defeat against Ireland on Saturday, Martin Johnson can have no complaints.

Having edged their noses in front with 10 minutes to go, England seemed destined to take the spoils on a scrappy afternoon at Twickenham.

Unfortunately, their lack of resilience cost them dearly and a late Irish try by the impressive Tommy Bowe sealed a 20-16 victory for the men in green – their sixth victory over England in seven Six Nations encounters.

England now have a couple of weeks to regroup and prepare for a must-win game against Scotland at Murrayfield on 13 March.

The destiny of the championship is, to some extent, still in their own hands.

If England can beat Scotland and France in their final two games, then point difference may well be key come the final reckoning.

Ireland’s ability to score tries, three to be precise, was a shining example for England, if ever they needed one, of where they are falling short at the moment.

Jonny Wilkinson will always keep the score ticking over with his boot, but the indents that penalties make need to be supported by the greater blows that tries are responsible for.

Wilkinson was the best of England’s backs on Saturday and they were helped by the introduction of the lively Ben Foden in the second half.

It was good to see a player in an England jersey whose first instinct was to attack and his incisive play should be rewarded with a greater opportunity against Scotland.

One substitution I didn’t feel was so successful was the removal of Danny Care for the final 10 minutes.

I presume his replacement, Paul Hodgson, was brought on to sure up the defence but that never happened.

Care seemed to have grown into the game by the time he was taken off, but perhaps his industrious afternoon in muddy conditions had caught up with him.

While England have another two-week hiatus, I have strapped the lycra back on for the penultimate stage of the Dallaglio Cycle Slam.

A tricky 410km ride from Twickenham to Fishguard via Cardiff’s Millenium Stadium will set up the final leg, but there is a lot of pedalling to be done before I can begin to think about the finish line.

It’s all in aid of Sport Relief and the Dallaglio Foundation – follow my progress at Lawrence Dallaglio is rugby ambassador for Greene King IPA, the official beer of England Rugby. To find your nearest official England Rugby supporter pub visit