England coach Stuart Lancaster called on the country to back his players after a crushing 33-13 defeat to Australia at Twickenham saw the host nation crash out of the World Cup.
Bernard Foley’s two tries and 18 points with the boot shattered errant England’s hopes, with Owen Farrell’s late sin-binning confirming head coach Lancaster’s nightmare scenario.
Australia’s largest-ever Twickenham victory over England ensured both they and Wales progress to the quarter-finals from Pool A, while England’s bid for World Cup glory lasted all of 16 days.
Lancaster said: “I’m just gutted, gutted for all the fans and everyone at home. I’m sorry we let everyone down.
“The last 20 minutes Australia dominated and deserved to win.
“There are some fantastic young players in that England team. There’s 24 players playing their first World Cup and it’s going to hurt so badly.
“It’s going to be a good team and I want the country to stay behind the team because they are good lads.”
When asked about his own future as coach, Lancaster replied: “Obviously it’s not up to me.”