Eng­land boss calls out All Blacks

The Myanmar Times - - Sport -

ED­DIE Jones took a mo­ment away from heap­ing praise on his Eng­land side for mak­ing light work of Fiji to aim a taunt at the All Blacks. The for­mer Wal­la­bies coach, who wants to build a team ca­pa­ble of top­pling the world cham­pi­ons from their No 1 perch, could not re­sist stir­ring up the grow­ing ri­valry be­tween Eng­land and New Zealand, who avenged their re­cent Chicago de­feat by Ire­land with a 21-9 win in Dublin on Novem­ber 19.

As Eng­land cel­e­brated their 11th win un­der Jones, and their 12th in suc­ces­sion, by crush­ing Fiji 58-15 at Twick­en­ham, the Aus­tralian in­sisted his team had the “po­ten­tial for great­ness”.

Re­ply­ing to a ques­tion on whether his side will be on a par with the All Blacks by the time the teams next meet in two years’ time, Jones said, “Will they [New Zealand] still be num­ber one by then? We’ll have to see.

“We’re only 11 games into what we’re try­ing to do here. Now we need to get the show re­ally go­ing and we are just about to jump into the deep end.”

Be­fore kick-off on Novem­ber 19, Jones had called on Eng­land to play “fish and chips” rugby in or­der to pre­vent a Fi­jian “kava party” at Twick­en­hamm and af­ter see­ing the hosts run in nine tries he said, “It was the best fish and chips in Eng­land! No Kava today.”

“There was some ex­cel­lent rugby played by the team and I thought Ge­orge Ford was out­stand­ing,” added Jones of his out­side-half.

“Roko did well,” said the coach as he praised Fiji-born wing Semesa Rokoduguni, who marked his sec­ond Eng­land cap with two tries. “We have great com­pe­ti­tion across the board.

“I was re­ally happy with as­pects of our game. We dropped off at times but it’s al­ways hard to main­tain that in­ten­sity. There is po­ten­tial for real great­ness in our team.”

Eng­land now turn their at­ten­tion to Ar­gentina, their Twick­en­ham op­po­nents Novem­ber 26, be­fore round­ing off the 2016 in­ter­na­tional pro­gram at home to Aus­tralia the fol­low­ing week­end.

‘Per­fect game’ Against Fiji, Eng­land scored five tries in­side the open­ing 26 min­utes but did give up three ei­ther side of half-time.

“I’m not frus­trated by the three tries we con­ceded,” said Jones. “Ev­ery­body wants to play the per­fect game but when you do that you may as well re­tire.

“We would like to be bet­ter in defence but it will come. It will come next week against Ar­gentina.”

The South Amer­i­cans were edged out 19-16 by Scot­land on Novem­ber 19 but Jones, speak­ing be­fore a dour Mur­ray­field strug­gle, said, “The Pu­mas have al­ways been a very good team which plays very good struc­tured rugby in the set-piece es­pe­cially.

“But now they have some ex­cel­lent run­ners with the ball and can play the un­struc­tured stuff just as well.

“They are a dif­fi­cult team to play against Ar­gentina but we will worry about that to­mor­row [Sun­day] morn­ing.”

Mean­while, Jones re­vealed he will not stand in the way of for­wards coach Steve Borthwick if he is se­lected as a mem­ber of War­ren Gat­land’s staff when the Bri­tish and Ir­ish Lions tour New Zealand next year.

“I’m not War­ren Gat­land so I don’t know what he is think­ing. But if Borths goes, he goes with our bless­ing,” said Jones.

Fiji coach John McKee said his side al­lowed Eng­land, who started the endof-year Test pro­gramme with vic­tory over South Africa, to gain too much early mo­men­tum.

“We gave Eng­land too many me­tres and a side like that will cap­i­talise on their op­por­tu­ni­ties,” McKee said.

“Eng­land were very good in at­tack and very clin­i­cal. They showed what a qual­ity side they are and will cause prob­lems for any team they face.”

The New Zealan­der added, “I ex­pect Eng­land to get stronger in the com­ing Tests, and it is not un­fea­si­ble that they go un­beaten. But Ar­gentina and Aus­tralia will re­ally chal­lenge them.” –

‘It was the best fish and chips in Eng­land! No Kava today.’

Ed­die Jones Eng­land coach

Photo: AFP

Eng­land’s full-back Alex Goode (cen­tre) dives to score dur­ing the rugby union test match be­tween Eng­land and Fiji at Twick­en­ham Sta­dium in south­west Lon­don on Novem­ber 19.

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