Henderson for Toner the only change for Grand Slam-chasing Ireland
- Author: Julie Sanders Mar 16, 2018,
Mar 16, 2018, 23:15
Results last weekend, when Ireland thrashed Scotland and England were abject in defeat to a rampant France, handed Joe Schmidt's side the title with a game to spare, leaving Eddie Jones counting the cost of two consecutive defeats.
"Everything was about building and tweaking and getting it right for that World Cup and, ultimately, going into that tournament as the No1 team in the world".
Jones insists the key to foiling Ireland is to ensure England are operating at "peak arousal state". "I don't think we would be uninspired by a 3-0 victory, we know what's at stake".
"The betting interest for the Six Nations is growing year on year and this in no doubt largely down to Ireland's success on an global level as well as domestic success among the provinces".
"I always consult people because I am not the reservoir of wisdom".
Jones' derogatory remarks about Ireland and Wales did not quite make front-page news, but a prominent radio breakfast show asked their listeners whether they should debate Jones' comments about Wales and Ireland, or alternatively whether this country was on the verge of war with Russian Federation. You could see it the other way, couldn't you?
"The emotional part of the game is enormous in the Six Nations".
"No one predicted Ireland would go to Twickenham as champions and I think that trajectory that England are on - they've got to live with that for the next six months and the only way they can kind of get some lift out of that is to win on Saturday", he added. "We will get that back, don't worry, we have got them next year at home, we will get 'em back!"
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Ireland players and supporters celebrate after Sean Cronin scored their side's fourth try during the NatWest Six Nations Rugby Championship match between Ireland and Scotland at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin.
Speaking publicly on the matter for the first time yesterdayday, Jones refused to expand on his remarks. "I've made the statement, I don't need to say anything else on it".
"That's how important the game is to them because potentially if they lose against Ireland then they have three games against South Africa".
On the team front, it is the visitors who present a more settled unit with just one change made from the 28-8 win over Scotland, Iain Henderson coming in for Devin Toner in the second row.
Sam Simmonds joins Chris Robshaw and James Haskell in the back row.
Replacements: Jamie George, Joe Marler, Dan Cole, Joe Launchbury, Don Armand, Danny Care, George Ford, Mike Brown. Outside the scrum, Jones's post-match musings in Paris on the pressing need to power England up have, as predicted, brought a new midfield of Owen Farrell, Ben Te'o and Jonathan Joseph.