Wales prop Gethin Jenkins is expecting the forward challenge to go up a notch or two when England arrive at the Millennium Stadium on Saturday.
The defending champions made a winning start to their campaign with a 26-13 victory over Scotland on Sunday but the Cardiff Blues star insists England – 36-11 winners over Italy – will present a different challenge, especially up front.
“We started to get on top in the scrum against Scotland, but it’s going to be a step up on Saturday,” said Jenkins.
“They have got a quality front row and Julian White to come on as well. We know it’s going to be a big challenge and they are one of the best scrimmaging teams around.
“You never take England lightly. They were a bit scrappy against Italy but they still managed to score five tries.
“Wales-England games are never far from being close games so it will be hard to keep our momentum going.”
But Jenkins is sure Wales will not buckle under the favourites’ tag.
“Being favourites is a different pressure to have,” he added. “The expectation in Wales has risen so much because we are playing so well. We have got to use that pressure and turn it into confidence on the field.
“Just six days of preparation is quite hard. We didn’t get back (from Scotland) until late on Sunday night and I think the coaches and management will look after us this week.
“We will probably rely on what we have done in training over the last two weeks and keep ourselves fresh for the challenge.
“As long as the boys have recovered we will be mentally prepared for it.
“We were still a bit off it against Scotland. Defensively, we weren’t as good as we were last year. We will have to step that up a few notches.
“We are always looking to improve. At the breakdown we weren’t as clinical as we could have been and there are a few other things we need to work on.
“But when they all come together we will be putting a really good performance in.”
Jones was very complimentary towards his fellow Wales prop Adam Jones, who showed up well against the Scots, hitting the rucks and making a lot of tackles.
“Adam is definitely a lot fitter and getting around the field more. And it’s great for the team when he is doing that. He has shed quite a lot of weight and it’s showing on the field.”
Wales have put back today’s planned team announcement 48 hours to give injured trio – captain Ryan Jones (calf), Gavin Henson (calf) and Shane Williams (twisted ankle) – as much time as possible to prove their fitness.
Jones and Henson pulled out of the Scotland clash while Williams injured himself just after scoring one of Wales’ four tries.
Jenkins would like to see his captain back this weekend.
“Ryan makes a big difference to the side,” he added. “I thought Dafydd Jones played well but Ryan is our captain and he has been playing very well for the Ospreys over the last month.