The Official Online RBS 6 Nations Store is open. The store has everything you need to get behind your team during the RBS 6 Nations, plus the store is now fully stocked with a much wider range of rugby merchandise.
To say Gary Street’s side bulldozed their way through the 2011 RBS 6 Nations would be an understatement.
Five games played: five games won scoring 223 points – nearly double runners up France’s total – with an astonishing eight points conceded.
But it didn’t end there as in the autumn they completed a series victory over New Zealand, who had beaten them in the previous year’s World Cup final.
Neither is it the case that this current England side have already passed their peak with fresh talent Harriet Millar-Mills, Saracens’ Hannah Gallagher, Bristol’s Isabelle Noel-Smith and Worcester’s Ceri Large included in the curtain raiser against Scotland.
But despite walloping Scotland 89-0 at Twickenham last year, fly-half McLean says there will be no resting on their laurels.
“For us as players you never get complacent when you are playing for your country,” she said.
“That’s the most important thing and you want to continue playing for your country. “Gary is always challenging us in training and post New Zealand, post that third Test, they said it is eight weeks until Scotland now girls, so they never let us get complacent.
“They are quite capable of bringing us back down to earth but we are not a complacent group. We have not won a World Cup yet and until we do that I don’t think you can be complacent in anyway. Actually that’s the ultimate goal.
“2011 was brilliant for us and beating NZ was the pinnacle of that. For us as players we need to learn particular lessons from that and take that into the Six Nations and use that tournament as a stepping stone.
“With new faces like Hannah Gallagher and Alex Matthews who were involved in New Zealand and hopefully they will be involved in the Six Nations as well. It is really important for development of the English game that you are in a position where you are getting new players in all the time. Hopefully those girls will be involved at some point.”
As well as having the responsibility of being orchestrator in chief as fly-half, McLean is also captain of the Red Roses.
Having taken the metaphorical armband from Catherine Spencer before the start of last year’s Championship, the Darlington Mowden Park star has grown in the role.
But before growing conscious of her leadership duties, McLean insists her primary focus is always on her own performance.
“It is amazing being captain,” she added. “I just try and lead by example. I obviously had some very big shoes to fill after Catherine who did an amazing job but I have settled into the role a bit more now.
“The girls around me have been brilliant and been really supportive. More than anything it is making sure I am playing well and justifying my selection. I do like to have my penny’s worth before we go out which goes with the role of being a fly-half.
“I do want to lead by example. We have got some great backs so there’s a bit more pressure on giving them a bit more ball. It is a challenge as is the captaincy but there’s one I am looking forward to and I am really excited by the Six Nations.”