Springboks

Ex-England No 10 questions team's culture under Jones

2018-06-20 07:00
Eddie Jones (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Former England flyhalf Andy Goode says coach Eddie Jones must make changes to the way his side operates.

England’s 23-12 loss to the Springboks in Bloemfontein ended their hopes of claiming a first-ever series win over South Africa.

They will also head into Saturday’s third and final Test at Newlands on the back of six consecutive losses.

Goode, who played 17 Tests for England between 2005 and 2009, has written a column for the Rugby Pass website in which he said Jones' men were “guilty of repeating the same old mistakes”.

“The definition of insanity is doing the same things over and over again but expecting different results. On Saturday they were on the wrong side of the penalty count again, ill-discipline cost them again, they lost the gainline battle again, they were physically outmuscled again and, by all accounts, they had prepared for the second Test in exactly the same way as the first,” Goode wrote.

While Saturday’s Test will be a dead-rubber, Goode said it will be an important one for Jones to win.

“It is a watershed moment for Eddie Jones. He has to start making significant changes and not just in terms of his selection. He’s held his hands up last week by writing a letter to Bath owner Bruce Craig and apologising for the comment he made about him being the Donald Trump of rugby but incidents like that one suggest he thinks he’s untouchable. He isn’t and a bit more humility wouldn’t go amiss.

“Jones is backing himself into a corner in terms of his prickliness with the press but the primary question marks over him are no longer about his dealings with the media, they’re about how he can improve the team and get them back on track because they’ve gone seriously off the rails.”

Goode added that Jones’ behaviour may have rubbed off badly on the England players, referring to scrumhalf Ben Youngs’ decision to walk away from a television interview after one question.

The Test in Bloemfontein was also marred by a post-match confrontation between players Mike Brown, Joe Marler and fans. The Harlequins duo reportedly exchanged angry words with supporters after England surrendered the series.

“Ben Youngs’ interview after the game on Saturday and some of the stories of altercations with fans do hint at worrying cultural issues within the camp,” Goode added.

Goode also called on Jones to address England’s discipline and suggested he would make eight changes for the Test at Newlands: CLICK HERE to view Andy Goode’s proposed England XV for the Newlands Test.

Read more on:    england  |  springboks  |  rugby

 

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