Our young guys did well says Ed­die

The Rugby Paper - - Autumn Internationals -

ENG­LAND head coach Ed­die Jones heaped praise on his patched-up side who fol­lowed up last June’s fi­nal Test win over South Africa in the Cape Town rain.

“We worked hard to­day and got the re­sult so the guys will be con­fi­dent for New Zealand next week­end,” he said.

“We are a bloody good team. We’ve lost a few games but we played very well.

“We kept them on the back foot and when you are in an arm-wres­tle the game is al­ways go­ing to break up. We did not take the chances that came our way but got the job done.”

Jones’ young and in­ex­pe­ri­enced pack in­clud­ing open­side Tom Curry, who was in­jured and needed crutches at the end, No.8 Mark Wil­son, who was man of the match, and blind­side Brad Shields man­aged to com­pete full on in a phys­i­cal war with a huge and vastly more bat­tle-hard­ened Spring­boks for­ward brigade.

Jones said: “The young guys did re­ally well but the whole team showed a lot of tough­ness in our play.

“It was a pity we could not get a try but I thought Jack Now­ell was out­stand­ing and our de­fence was su­perb.”

Jones also hit back at his crit­ics and ac­cused them of try­ing to get him the sack.

The head coach, who had seen the pres­sure build on his shoul­ders af­ter five de­feats in a row be­fore win­ning the fi­nal Test against the Spring­boks in the sum­mer, went on the at­tack.

Ques­tions about Jones’ fu­ture have in­ten­si­fied go­ing into the Au­tumn cam­paign with the RFU des­per­ate for his side to get win­ning mo­men­tum with the World Cup less than a year away.

Jones said: “I don’t un­der­stand it. Why is the next game al­ways the most im­por­tant game? Be­cause you want to sack me? You’re go­ing to do it at some stage. You know that. If I stay long enough, you’re go­ing to get me sacked.

“One day you’ll be happy. You’ll come in and say ‘Fan­tas­tic, we’ve got an­other bloke we can ter­rorise’. It was a good Test match. We’re happy, they’re not so happy.”

Spring­boks coach Rassie Eras­mus said: “It was a very hard phys­i­cal game which could have gone ei­ther way at the end.”

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