Jones wants 'something special' from England against Wallabies
INTERVIEW: Eddie Jones has called for his under-performing England side to create “something special” in their three-Test series against his home country Australia after a lacklustre year so far.
After finishing a disappointing third in this year’s Six Nations, behind France and Ireland, England were humiliated 52-21 at Twickenham by the Barbarians last weekend – before heading to Perth to prepare for the first of three Tests on July 2.
With the pressure on, Jones implored his team to grab the opportunity and strive to match the 3-0 series victory he oversaw against the Wallabies in Australia in 2016.
“Australia is a place where you can become a special team,” he told reporters late Friday.
“You just look at the record between Australian and English sporting teams.
“We’ve got 10 blokes here [in the current squad] who have done it before, being the only English team to win in Australia.
“You find out a lot about the players. And for the players, it’s a great opportunity for them to be part of something special.”
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Jones brought a 36-man squad to Australia, recalling powerful Saracens forward Billy Vunipola, veteran scrum-half Danny Care and eight uncapped players.
But they suffered a blow on arrival with Jonny May – second only to Rory Underwood in England’s list of all-time leading try-scorers – testing positive for COVID-19.
He has been forced into seven days of self-isolation, casting doubt over whether he will be ready for the opening Test on Saturday.
Australian Jones is back on home soil, boosting a formidable record against the Wallabies since he took over in 2015, steering them to eight straight wins.
But he insisted that “we don’t start with an advantage” in Perth, forecasting Dave Rennie’s Australia will come at them with all guns blazing.
“I’m sure Australia won’t be encouraging too many line-outs in the game,” he said.
“Their general pattern against us is that they don’t kick out, they kick in.
“And with Nic White potentially at nine and Quade Cooper at 10, they might continually play that long kicking game.”