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Re-live Danny Care’s crazy brain fade which sent Martin Johnson into a rage

BY Grant Constable  ·  Saturday Oct 16, 2021

Back in 2009 Harlequins star Danny Care produced a moment of madness during a Six Nations clash against Ireland at Croke Park in Dublin.

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The replacement scrum half charged into the back of Ireland prop Marcus Horan with no arms which, following a review by the TMO, cost England a penalty right in front of the posts.

At the time England trailed by five points with 10 minutes left on the clock and on top of the simple three points, Care was sent to the sin bin meaning his side played the remainder of the game with 14 men.

Commentator Brian Moore described Care’s actions as “petulant” and “stupid” while England head coach Martin Johnson slammed the seat in front of him in frustration.

Despite a late England try, it was Ireland who took a 14-13 win in round three of the tournament and the Irish famously went on to win the Grand Slam that year.

After the game, Care said: “I don’t think I can really defend what I did, but also I believe because of the disciplinary situation with England at the moment it was magnified.

“I could only hold my hands up afterwards. I apologised to the boys and said I wouldn’t let it happen again.

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“A lot of people are saying what I did was pointless but there was a reason for it. I saw Marcus Horan stood in that ruck, and I saw their scrum-half Peter Stringer looking for the ball.

“I thought: ‘I’ll try and hit Horan on top of Stringer, then it might slow the ball down a bit. And if we can get a turnover from it, then great.’

“I thought the ball was still in the ruck. It was a silly thing to do, I admit, but there was some thought behind it. I realise now it was unnecessary to do it at that point in the game.”

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