England flanker ‘highly unlikely’ to face All Blacks

Eddie Jones can't wait to face the All Blacks

Eddie Jones can't wait to face the All Blacks

New Zealand and England meet at Twickenham on Saturday for the first time in four years.

With Curry unavailable, England are likely to turn to another rookie flanker against New Zealand in the form of Bath's Sam Underhill.

With the highly-anticipated fixture that commands ticket prices up to £195 now due, Jones will use the drawn series with Steve Hansen's world champions as guidance.

"It's a massive opportunity for us to see how good we prepare for yet another big game - that's what we're focusing on", he said. They've got some good ideas about the game so we've got plenty of enthusiasm there.

"The good thing about this game is there's a lot of talk about it, there's a lot of hype about it and they're the occasions that really test you as a unit". There's a bit to be learned there. As he said, the experience will be invaluable for all the players involved, plus the coaches who will now know far more about them, so while it may have carried risks it was a gamble that has clearly paid off.

"And the overall part of the game is to make sure we win each minute in an 80-minute battle". "They are a good rugby team". It is not like Pythagoras theorem and there is no magic formula said he.

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"Sounds simple but their win rate of 91 per cent shows you it's not simple".

England face South Africa upcoming Saturday, in the first of four autumn internationals to be played by England.

"He's got a tremendous work ethic, Eddie; he does a lot of homework and through that he will have identified some areas he'll want to try to target", Hansen said.

"Since 2011 their line-out has gone from good to being outstanding". As Eddie Jones was determined to stress, there is a huge difference between acknowledging how to defeat New Zealand and precisely doing it. They didn't have a lot of ball but they hung in there and won a game they probably didn't feel they'd played their best but they still won.

Jones is "cautiously optimistic" that Manu Tuilagi and Courtney Lawes will recover from respective groin and back problems in time for Saturday but Tom Curry appears to be losing his battle with an ankle issue.

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