Manager Martin Johnson insists England's nail-biting finish against Wales on Saturday was just the test they needed to launch a RBS 6 Nations Grand Slam tilt.
Wales fought back from 20-3 down to within three points before Delon Armitage’s interception helped set up James Haskell’s 75th minute try to settle the match.
And far from tearing a strip off his side for allowing the Welsh back in, Johnson believes his England side took a big step forwards in their Six Nations curtain raiser.
“You wouldn’t say it at the time but it was probably a good thing we went through that Welsh comeback because we had to have the wherewithal and the belief to finish the game off,” said Johnson.
“Composure is not something you can give players in a box. Going through the experience of being points up early - you could say too early - is something you have to deal with.
“Ultimately we got it done. It was closer than we would have liked but it is part of the process for these guys of understanding how to play.”
But while England will go to Italy this weekend buoyed by their first win in four attempts against Wales, Johnson was quick to sound a note of caution.
“It is great they have got the result we have worked so hard for - but if we want to make it into a great win we have to perform next week in Rome,” added Johnson.