POOL PARTY: England have no excuses not being world champions in 2019, says boss Eddie Jones

 JONES says 2015 World Cup chumps England will have no excuses for not being champs in Japan in 2019.

Yesterday’s fixture draw means Jones’ side kick off their pool of death against Tonga and then build nicely with matches against the USA, Argentina and then Six Nations rivals France.

 

 England rugby stars practice in the pool together
England rugby stars practice in the pool together

And the England chief admitted: “If you wanted to set it up for us, that’s how you want it. So we have no excuses.

“We have been blessed with the locations. The advantage of being a big team is they want us to play in big grounds at the end of the pool.

“So we have Argentina in Tokyo Stadium, which is a great stadium — I used to live two train stations away from it and know it well.

“Then we have the final pool game against France at the Yokohama, which gives us a chance to experience a ground we could potentially be playing at later in the tournament.”

 

 Eddie Jones is confident England can be crowned world champions in 2019
Eddie Jones is confident England can be crowned world champions in 2019
 England rugby ace Mike Brown wades through a pool in a recovery session
England rugby ace Mike Brown wades through a pool in a recovery session
 England star Denny Solomona during a recovery pool session
England star Denny Solomona during a recovery pool session
 England have been drawn against France, Argentina, USA and Tonga

“Every team is clamouring to play over there. Australia have two Tests there, New Zealand are playing at least one and they’ve been doing coaching clinics over there.

 England ace Owen Farrell during a pool recovery session
England ace Owen Farrell during a pool recovery session
 England boss Eddie Jones says his players will relish the challenges ahead of them
England boss Eddie Jones says his players will relish the challenges ahead of them

“Every team is finding a way to get the knowledge of Japan.

“It’s not a rugby country, so generally there are no rugby facilities. The great thing about England is you stay in a hotel but there is a school down the road with great rugby facilities. That doesn’t happen in Japan.”

Holders New Zealand face South Africa in the tournament opener on September 21, while WALES will kick off Pool D with a banana-skin clash against Georgia — who they face in the first of their autumn internationals in Cardiff on November 18.

The former Soviet republic have climbed to 12th in the world rankings and are making a case to replace Italy in the Six Nations.

Wales boss Gatland said: “Our focus on the next two years is to provide a platform for us to peak in Japan.

“Now we can continue our planning and preparation for the tournament in finer detail.”

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