Jones Ready To Unsettle Springboks After Surprise England Selections

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Since Eddie Jones last chose a team to face South Africa, a lot has happened. He was in a packed hotel ballroom in Tokyo in 2019 anticipating the Rugby World Cup final, which did not turn out the way he had hoped. He’s still stuck on Zoom two years after his Covid was disturbed, and he says he still thinks about the Springboks’ emphatic 32-12 victory in Japan when he wakes up in the morning.

Which may explain why, ahead of Saturday’s Twickenham Test, Jones chose to issue his most ferocious pre-match challenge to an enemy team in a long time. “Post the World Cup South Africa said they knew they were going to win and knew they had the wood on us,” said England’s head coach. “The implication is that our forward pack is weak, but our forward pack isn’t weak and we’ll show that on Saturday.”

There was plenty more along those lines, with the gist being that England is no soft touch, that they will not back down, and that they collectively scoff at suggestions that South Africa’s heavy-duty forwards were going to chuck them on the barbecue nonchalantly. “The whole team is up for the fight,” continued Jones. “I’ve never seen a team as ready to play against South Africa.

source : Guardian sport

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