Eddie Jones calls on Georgia’s help to bolster England scrum

first_imgScotland rugby union team England’s pursuit of a third consecutive Six Nations title shows no signs of relenting this week with Eddie Jones revealing he has arranged two full-blooded training sessions against Georgia.Jones had initially hoped to take his squad to Tbilisi to face what he has described as “the strongest scrum pack in the world” but Georgia are now due in London for training sessions scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday during the first fallow week of the tournament.Both forwards sessions will be similar to that arranged with Wales in November with a focus on scrummaging and lineouts and are further evidence of Jones leaving no stone unturned as England prepare to face Scotland on Saturday week. Increasingly Jones sees England’s scrum as a key part of their armoury for the 2019 World Cup and, while they opened their Six Nations campaign with seven tries against Italy, he chose to laud the best scrummaging performance during his tenure.Jones has also recruited the former France hooker Marc Dal Maso as a consultant to assist the scrum coach, Neal Hatley, and it is understood the Rugby Football Union will contribute to the cost of Georgia’s 5,000-mile round trip as England seek to fine-tune their set piece further.“We want to have the best scrum in the world and they’re the biggest, ugliest, strongest scrum pack in the world,” Jones said. “Why wouldn’t we want to scrummage against them? It’s fantastic. We’re good friends with their two coaches, Milton Haig and Richard Graham – a Kiwi and an Aussie. They were keen on the idea and it suits us perfectly.” Share on LinkedIn Since you’re here… Eddie Jones Georgia rugby union team Share on Pinterest Read more England’s fingertips prove decisive in brawl in a squall against Wales Share on Facebook Six Nations Share on WhatsApp Jones likes to maximise England’s training camps and this week is another example of how he will not allow his players to settle into a comfort zone, relocating his squad from their Bagshot base to west London. In the build-up to the 12-6 victory against Wales on Saturday he rearranged their training schedule to combat a six-day turnaround from their opening win in Rome and this week there will be no let-up from the Australian.“We want to win the Six Nations but we’re also using this as a trial for the World Cup, so it’s a great opportunity for us to get some really quality scrum practice in,” he said. “It will be practice but we will do the same number of scrums that we would have in a game.”Against Wales Anthony Watson and Sam Simmonds were withdrawn with injuries but Jones was hopeful both would be fit to face Scotland. Nathan Hughes, who came off the bench for Wasps on Sunday to make a first appearance since sustaining a knee injury in December, will also be in contention while Joe Marler is available to bolster the scrum with his ban due to expire on Tuesday next week.“We’re always looking to improve our scrum,” said the captain, Dylan Hartley. “It has been going well for us. By mixing it up and training against someone different we will find something out about ourselves and we will learn. It will be a really useful tool and I’m sure they will take something from it as well.“If I scrum against Jamie George, Alec Hepburn and Harry Williams they know what we are trying to do, we know what they are trying to end and we end up negating each other. Every scrum has to be intense otherwise you get folded up like a travel map stuffed in your back pocket.”center_img Wales rugby union team news England rugby union team Six Nations 2018 Topics Share on Messenger Share via Email Support The Guardian Share on Twitter … we have a small favour to ask. More people, like you, are reading and supporting the Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we made the choice to keep our reporting open for all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We hope you will consider supporting us today. We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent. Every reader contribution, however big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Reuse this contentlast_img read more

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