In arguably the most anticipated Test of next season, England will host New Zealand at Twickenham in November. Eddie Jones has his mind set on a more important clash with the world champions.
“Only one game is going to count between England and New Zealand, and that’s at the World Cup (in 2019),” the England coach told The Telegraph.
Jones was at Australia’s helm in 2003 when the Wallabies were hammered 50-21 by the All Blacks in Sydney before the 2003 Rugby World Cup hosts responded with a 22-10 victory against New Zealand to reach, and eventually win, the final.
“When we played New Zealand in July 2003 and got beaten by 50 points, it was embarrassing,” he said. “Then we beat them in the (World Cup) semi-final, when it counted.
“The thing I remember the most (leading up to the semi-final) was a huge headline in the Sydney Morning Herald,” said Jones. “The piece was written by Peter FitzSimons, who I used to play with.
“He said something along the lines of ‘the Wallabies will be scared kangaroos in the headlights, they will freeze’. We did the exact opposite. We played with courage, we played with bravado.
“That is everything that Australian sport is about, and that’s what we are trying to do with England. The English are tough, they want to fight, they want to keep going and that is how we want to play our rugby.”
Jones has guided England to a 20-1 record during his first two seasons in charge – the result of his relentless work ethic.
“I put my heart on my sleeve. I can’t give any more, I can’t give any less. I give it everything I have got. I give the boys every bit of attention. So every minute that I have, I give it to developing the team.”