England vs Japan: Jamie Joseph responds to Eddie Jones by laughing off predecessor’s jibes

Former Japan coach has demanded his England players ‘smash’ them this weekend and warned them their only hope if to ‘pray’, but Joseph saw the funny side of the Australian’s remarks

Nick Purewal
Monday 12 November 2018 15:05
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Eddie Jones and Steve Hansen praise England despite defeat to New Zealand

Jamie Joseph has laughed off Eddie Jones’ advice that Japan should seek divine intervention for their clash with England.

Former Japan coach Jones has warned the Brave Blossoms that England will be “absolutely” ruthless at Twickenham on Saturday, as they exorcise frustrations from last weekend’s 16-15 defeat to New Zealand.

Jones suggested Japan head to the temple to prepare to face his England side, but current Blossoms boss Joseph shrugged off the warning on Monday.

Ex-All Blacks lock Joseph admitted Japan will need some help on the weather front in order to launch their fast-paced phase play – but insisted he will not be caught in any places of worship this week.

“When we’ve got the ball and guys are really excited about playing, we’ve got a different style of play; we’re not as big as others, but we’re quick,” said Joseph.

“In tough conditions it’s tough to get our game going, so we’re hoping and praying for a bit of weather. I’m not sure I’m going to the temple though!”

Joseph attended England’s abrasive Test with New Zealand, admitting he relished Twickenham’s cut and thrust.

The former Highlanders coach believes Japan remain on course for their objective of reaching a maiden quarter-final as hosts of next year’s World Cup.

Before all that though, Joseph feels Japan will pose England several different threats from New Zealand this weekend.

“Our players all watched the England match; I went to the Test match, loved it,” said Joseph.

“Those types of games are exactly what rugby’s all about in my view.

Jones did not hold back in his comments post-New Zealand defeat

“But I suspect the game that we play, how the All Blacks play, and the fact England have had a few matches, it could be a little bit different this weekend.

“We just play our rugby, we like to play quick, we’re not as big as other sides.

“We don’t want rain come kick-off time, and I think we’ve shown over the last couple of years if we can get our game going we can push teams hard.

“You could say they were unlucky against the All Blacks.

“But my focus really is just to go out there and make sure we can do our very best against a very good England side.

“We’re getting a lot of experience and I think we are on track for the World Cup.

“In terms of development in the last few years we’ve had some good performances and that experience is helping.”

PA

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