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England head coach Eddie Jones says that they will not be bullied by the Springboks in November on their end of year tour.
The under-fire Boks, who will face the world champions New Zealand in Christchurch on Saturday on the back of two consecutive defeats in the Rugby Championship, have not lost to England since 2006.
That involved 12 Test matches and the Boks won 11, with a single draw coming in Port Elizabeth in 2012.
Their last encounter in November 2014 saw the South Africans triumph 31-28 at Twickenham, but Jones is keen to turn the tables in the next clash on November 12 at the same London venue.
“They can’t be bullies against us because it implies there’s someone there to be bullied, and we can’t be bullied,” Jones told The Times of London on Wednesday. “They’ll be physically relentless, they’ll be at us, that’s always been the way they play against England. But we’ll be mentally right.”
The English have made a sensational start to the Jones reign that began in November last year, winning the Six Nations and then producing a 3-0 whitewash of Australia away from home.
In just eight months, the former Wallaby mentor transformed England from being knocked out at the group stage of the World Cup on home soil to beating the finalists Down Under.
But the 56-year-old Jones – who is known to be a hard task-master – is still not satisfied, and has the All Blacks in his sights, saying the world champions have “significant weaknesses” and are “beatable”.
For that to be exploited, though, England’s coaches need to evolve continuously.
“We haven’t done anything yet, we’re not No 1 in the world, so we still have a lot to aspire to. We’ve been working really hard with our coaching staff on how we can coach better because we didn’t coach well enough on tour. Although we’re happy with the result, we’re not happy with our performance,” Jones said.
“If we want the team to play better, then we’ve got to coach better. Our coaches, to a large extent, have been a product of the domestic game here and they need to be products of the international game, which is significantly different to the domestic game.
“We’re taking this very seriously because, by 2019 (World Cup in Japan), we’ve got to be the best coaching team in the world.”
To achieve that goal, Jones has enlisted the help of several of Great Britain’s Olympic team coaches – from hockey, athletics and judo, and possibly cycling – to bring that extra knowledge into rugby.
Jones added that he believes the British and Irish Lions, under Warren Gatland, have a “great chance” of beating the All Blacks next year but has long admired the Kiwi way of developing coaches by sending them to the northern hemisphere for further experience after having taken charge of Super Rugby teams.
“New Zealand control the world,” he said. “They control every bit of rugby; every law that’s changed, New Zealand drive it. They control rugby in so many different countries. They are a smart country.”
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