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Dublin: 7 °C Tuesday 19 November, 2019

Jones claims England were spied on and calls Kiwi media 'fans with keyboards'

The England boss said all the pressure is on New Zealand ahead of Saturday’s World Cup semi-final.

EDDIE JONES HAS stirred things up ahead of England’s World Cup semi-final against New Zealand by claiming that his team was spied on at training and calling the Kiwi media “fans with keyboards”.

Jones is never afraid of lobbing verbal grenades ahead of big games and the England boss has decided to do so again today, saying that all the pressure is on the All Blacks for Saturday’s clash in Yokohama.

japan-rugby-wcup-england The England boss said his team was spied on. Source: Christophe Ena

The 59-year-old claimed that someone may have been spying on an England training session in Tokyo.

“There was definitely someone in the apartment block filming, but it might have been a Japanese fan,” said Jones.

“I don’t care, mate. That’s part of the deal, that’s the fun of the World Cup.

“Everyone knows what everyone does. There are no surprises in world rugby anymore. That’s the great thing about the game, you just have to be good enough on the day.

“I haven’t done it [spied on a team] since 2001, I used to do it.

“You just don’t need to do it anymore, you can see everything. You can watch everyone’s training on Youtube.

“There’s no value in doing that sort of thing, absolutely zero. We knew it from the start, it doesn’t change anything, we love it.” 

Jones also criticised the New Zealand media for what he perceives to be the easy ride that Steve Hansen and the All Blacks get.

“Someone has to ask them [the All Blacks] a question because the New Zealand media doesn’t,” said Jones. “You guys are just fans with keyboards, someone has to ask them some questions.

“The England team… you get so much media exposure, you get media pressure, everything is scrutinised, the players are scrutinised, the coaches are scrutinised

“One week ago, I was going to get sacked, Owen [Farrell] couldn’t kick, someone wrote there’d be blood on the walls of Twickenham. Now we are in a semi-final and have a chance of going through, and we are just excited about it.”

enlgand-v-australia-2019-rugby-world-cup-quarter-final-oita-stadium Jones' team face the All Blacks on Saturday. Source: Ashley Western

Furthermore, Jones said all the pressure will be on World Cup favourites New Zealand against his England team this weekend.

“We don’t have any pressure, mate,” said Jones. “Put up your hand if you think we can win. There you go, so no one thinks we can win. There are 120 million Japanese people out there whose second team are the All Blacks.

“So there’s no pressure on us. We’ve just got to have a great week, enjoy it, relax, train hard and enjoy this great opportunity we’ve got.

“Whereas they’ve got to be thinking about how they’re looking for their third World Cup and so that brings some pressure. We’ve prepared for this game for two-and-a-half years.

“I can remember being in Kyoto [for the World Cup draw] two-and-a-half years ago and quickly you could do the mathematics – even an Australian could do the mathematics – that we were going to play New Zealand in a semi-final.

“Progressively, we’ve built a game that we think we can take New Zealand with and we’ve done that over the last two and a half years. We’re just excited by the possibility.

“One week ago, I was going to get sacked, Owen couldn’t kick, someone wrote there’d be blood on the walls of Twickenham. Now we are in a semi-final and have a chance of going through, and we are just excited about it.

“You have to be able to cope with it and at times it is difficult to cope with, no doubt about it.”

Jones’ words only add to the anticipation ahead of Saturday’s potentially epic clash between the All Blacks and England in Yokohama.

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About the author:

Murray Kinsella  / Reports from Tokyo

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