Mitchell relishing atmosphere as England into Paris Sevens quarter-final
Tom Mitchell claims he loves playing in the lion's den after England beat hosts France en route to the quarter-finals of the Paris Sevens.
In the penultimate event of this year's HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series, England saw off Spain, Les Bleus and drew with Kenya to top their pool and book a Cup quarter-final with the USA on Sunday morning.
Spain were no match for England in the opener as the Red Rose ran out 31-0 winners – 19-year-old Callum Sirker impressing with two sensational tries.
France were similarly dispatched, going down 24-7, as Tom Bowen and Dan Norton established a 12-0 half-time lead before Ollie Lindsay-Hague and Mitchell crossed after the break, while Jeremy Aicardi got the hosts' only score.
And Mitchell relished coming up against the partisan support of the Parisian crowd in the intense encounter.
"I've played a couple of games in France before and you know you are always going to be up against a passionate crowd but this was next level," he said.
"There is unbelievable support here for their home side. It was an amazing occasion to be part of and I'm pleased we came out the right side of the result too.
"Experience obviously plays a part in these environments but so does wanting to enjoy it. Enjoyment is a real value that we cherish.
"Knowing you gave your all and you enjoyed it – that approach tends to bring the best out of us."
England rounded off their day with a 12-12 draw against Kenya – Ruaridh McConnochie and Dan Bibby's tries being cancelled out by Frank Wanyama and Dennis Ombachi.
But that result was enough for Simon Amor's troops to top the pool and they can now gear up for a shot at the USA in the last-eight on Sunday.