Former player gives insight into the mind of Eddie Jones

Eddie Jones spent three years planning to beat the Springboks

Japan’s Rugby World Cup centre Craig Wing has warned not to try an understand England head coach Eddie Jones as he is a master tactician who is five moves ahead.

Wing has revealed that Jones targeted South Africa in the Rugby World Cup and that the team spent months on end training for when they would meet in Brighton.

“He is very calculated in everything he does,” says Wing.“Rest assured he is five or six plays ahead of what we’re seeing now.”

Jones has a coaching history around the world but Wing trained under the Australian in the three years building up to the Rugby World Cup.

Wing is a former NSW and Australian league star who moved to Japan in 2010 and in 2013 he became a dual international which was around the same time that Jones started his planning to beat the Springboks at the 2015 World Cup.

The centre says that an enormous amount of planning and training went into that match and Jones had analysed in depth how Japan would be able to pull it off.

“It was very, very, very tough and we got pushed to our limits,” Wing told The Daily Telegraph.

“It had a lovely golf course around the outside — we didn’t see it once from April through to September,” Wing said.

“The first five week block we didn’t get a day off. We had 5.30am sessions and often wouldn’t get to bed until after physio at 9 or 10 at night. We did that for days on end. I think there were 100-plus training sessions in those first five weeks. It was meeting room, meal room, weights room, on the field or in bed. They were the only places we went.”

Wing says that every day in camp was centred on how to beat South Africa in the Rugby World Cup.

“The whole time he always spoke about having belief, and that we are not going there just to make up the numbers,” Wing said.

“We are training every day like this because we are going to beat the Springboks. For years in advance, we began that preparation. We analysed their play, we analysed their players. Everything we did in training was centred around the way we were going to play, and attack them. And it was quite clever, because that style would work pretty much for the other teams in our pool as well.”

Wing says that the only coach that he has worked with who shares a similar amount of brain power with Jones is ex-NSW Origin league coach Phil Gould.

“They were both excellent at highlighting the weaknesses in the opposition,” Wing said.

“We saw it over and over and over again. We thought: “yeah, we can beat them. That is clearly a weakness.”

“He showed us the weaknesses in the way the Springboks played and in their players, and the errors they repeatedly made. It gave us a belief.”

Wing says that Jones built up the Japanese game by adding layer upon layer from 2012 and re-engineered their attacking shape, defensive structures, fitness and durability.

“There were different phases each year. Each year we’d work on parts of the end game he was trying to achieve,” Wing said.

“Some games we weren’t allowed to kick the ball. The New Zealand Maori came over to Japan and we had that no kicking gameplan.

“They smashed us. They’d get a turnover and go pass-pass-pass and score, because our guys were so tired. The Japanese media wrote us off on that performance, but there was a strategy behind it all.”

Jones trained the Japanese players to hold on to the ball and build pressure to be able to score when they are almost out on their feet and it all paid off in the final minutes of the match in Brighton between Japan and South Africa.

“We did a huge amount of training under fatigue,” Wing said.

“I am really interested to see how much of it carries over to how the English team play and how he has focused on their strengths.”

Wing says that he has no doubt that Jones will have devised a strategy to beat Australia but adds that there will be longer term goals being excuted.

“It will be just part of the process, and they won’t be playing their World Cup gameplan here and now,” Wing said.

The Bookies have given Australia a 3 point start for this Match – with an offer of up to $200 in Bonus bets

Match : Australia v England
Venue : Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
Kick Off local: 20:00
Referee: Romain Poite (France)
Assistant Ref 1:Craig Joubert (South Africa)
Assistant Ref 2:Glen Jackson (New Zealand)



15. Israel Folau, 14 Dane Haylett-Petty, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Samu Kerevi, 11 Rob Horne, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 David Pocock, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Scott Fardy, 5 Rob Simmons, 4 Rory Arnold, 3 Greg Holmes, 2 Stephen Moore, 1 Scott Sio.

Replacements :16 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 17 James Slipper, 18 Sekope Kepu, 19 James Horwill, 20 Dean Mumm, 21 Sean McMahon, 22 Nick Frisby, 23 Christian Leali’ifano.


15 Mike Brown, 14 Anthony Watson, 13 Jonathan Joseph, 12 Luther Burrell, 11 Marland Yarde, 10 Owen Farrell, 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Billy Vunipola, 7 James Haskell, 6 Chris Robshaw, 5 George Kruis, 4 Maro Itoje, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Dylan Hartley (c), 1 Mako Vunipola.

Replacements : 16 Luke Cowan-Dickie, 17 Matt Mullan, 18 Paul Hill, 19 Joe Launchbury, 20 Courtney Lawes, 21 Danny Care, 22 George Ford, 23 Jack Nowell.

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