Jones says England ‘absolutely flying’ for Argentina

Saturday, October 5th, 2019 00:00 |
Coach Eddie Jones.

England are “absolutely flying” on the eve of their crunch Pool C Rugby World Cup match against Argentina, coach Eddie Jones said Friday, vowing to take the Pumas on at their own physical game.

“We’re physically in the best condition we’ve ever been in. We’re absolutely flying this morning,” said Jones, in characteristically bullish fashion.

An England win will see them first to qualify for the quarter-finals at this year’s World Cup and Jones said he expected the game to be won in the forwards.

“You play against Argentina, they base their game on the scrum... so you’ve got to take them on up front, which is the scrum, maul, the ruck attack and ruck defence. That’s where it’s going to be won,” Jones told reporters at Tokyo Stadium.

He called on his team to match Argentina’s “pride and passion” but also to play “smart” and keep their discipline.

Jones said the players were well-trained for the pressure-cooker atmosphere of the match but admitted it was always hard to know how they would react.

“Like everything, it’s a bit like a tea bag, you don’t know how good it is until you put it in the hot water,” he joked.

After losing their opener to France in a nail-biting contest, Argentina need to win on Saturday to keep hopes of qualifying from the ‘group of death’ in their own hands.

Jones said he thought the Pumas had been unlucky to lose 23-21 with Les Bleus kicking a late drop goal through Camille Lopez and then fluffing a last-gasp penalty shot of their own.Argentina have been “pretty impressive” so far, Jones said. -AFP

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