Friday, June 1, 2018

England's Eddie Jones stands by training regime that has injured FIFTEEN Red Rose stars in two years

Eddie Jones has hit back at critics of his brutal training methods and ignited a club versus country row.

Bath owner Bruce Craig lambasted Jones’ regime after five of his club’s players were injured in the England camp — including prop Beno Obano, who is set to miss a full year, and flanker Sam Underhill.

In all, FIFTEEN players have been crocked while training with England in the past two years, with Wasps flanker Sam Jones being forced to RETIRE at age 26 after suffering a gruesome leg injury wrestling at the now-notorious Brighton get-together in 2016.

Jack Nowell, Anthony Watson, George Kruis, Tom Curry and Jonny May have also been casualties during Red Rose training.

And the latest victim is Worcester centre Ben Te’o, who was forced out of the forthcoming tour to South Africa after aggravating a thigh injury in the gym on Tuesday.

But Jones reckons his players need to train tough to prepare themselves for the hothouse environment of Test match rugby.

The England head coach said: “I don’t have any concerns. We train appropriately for Test match rugby.

“We prepare players for Test matches. I don’t think anyone at a club has the right to tell a coach how to train a Test team.

“You never want to get players injured, you’re always looking to train appropriately for the game, but we play a collision sport.”

Jones’ squad fly to South Africa on Saturday for a three-Test trip that kicks off in Johannesburg the following Saturday.

Billy Vunipola is on the plane after coming through an hour of the Premiership final last weekend for Saracens after hamstring trouble.

Jones is keeping his fingers crossed the No.8 will be fully firing come the first Test at Ellis Park after a knee injury and a broken arm kept him out of the autumn internationals and the Six Nations.

“We still have a concern over his hamstring and how fit he is going to be," said the Australian. “It’s still a little bit tight so we have just got to be careful with him. He might be right for Saturday week.

“We have gone through a long period without Billy and while he’s a great player we have been able to cope without him. We want him back in the side, but if he’s not, we will work out another way to play.”

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