The Harlequins prop has nearly finished a six-week spell on the sidelines after being sent off for a vengeful clear-out of Sale’s TJ Ioane and will be free to play from February 20.
Marler and James Haskell, another recent offender whose ban for a red card expired on Monday, have been in England camp since the start of the Six Nations – and it has not been a bed of red roses.
They have felt Eddie Jones’s sharp tongue and taken a full part in training, including Tuesday’s scrum session against Georgia, and had to do extras of their own while other players had their feet up.
Marler, now in the frame to play Scotland a week on Saturday, revealed he was almost unable to view England’s 12-6 win over Wales last weekend until the nail-biting climax.
“I couldn’t actually watch it,” said Marler. “I got in the car just before kick-off and listened to bits on the radio.
“There was a lot of me that was gutted, because it is my favourite fixture – England-Wales, the best game, I love playing in and being involved in, and I was gutted not being part of it.
“I watched the last five minutes, I kicked the kids and the wife out of the lounge. It sticks with me that I really need to knuckle down now because I am missing out on these things that I really want to be a part of.
“It is awful because there is no being managed in order to peak for Saturday. There is no Saturday for me and Hask.
“In the last few weeks we have been up at the crack of dawn and rooming together – that’s an experience in itself with Hask – and we have just been flogged.
“Rightly so a little bit, as a punishment I guess, but also you haven’t got a game to save yourself for.
“But the way we have trained and the way I have trained above game intensity will stand me in good stead if selected.”
Marler has been told to watch his step by the England head coach, but most of his indiscretions have come at club level even if the bans have cost him plenty of caps.
He was banned for two weeks in 2011 for fighting with Leicester’s Marcos Ayerza and in 2016 copped another two weeks for kicking Grenoble hooker Arnaud Heguy. He also got a three-week ban for elbowing Wasps’ Will Rowlands before Christmas.
His only real offence for England came when he called Wales’ Samson Lee ‘Gypsy Boy’ in 2016. Marler has always been a target for the wind-up merchants, but he can dish it out himself.
He admits this latest ban is not going to change that, but that he has got to change the way he plays at Harlequins.
“International rugby and playing for your country is a pressured environment,” he added. “Any mistake you make or penalty you give away can have a huge repercussion.
“In a club game you can get away with a lot more, it’s a lot less pressured. It’s tougher than it used to be but I probably am a little bit fast and loose and try and get away with a bit much.
“It’s a challenge but that’s something I’ve spent the last six weeks and previous three weeks thinking about.
“It’s just the mindset of remembering when someone wants to rile me up. I’m more than capable of ignoring it and getting on with the next job, as I’ve shown at international level.
“And it is remembering those moments as opposed to remembering someone elbowing me in the head and then two minutes later thinking here’s a chance to get my own back.
“I’ve had that reputation for years and part of me relishes it a bit. At international level it helps me stay a little bit more focused because there’s a lot more to lose.”
Source : EXPRESS