Eddie Jones managed to find some levity following Saturday’s 20-17 loss to Scotland, with the beaten England manager joking ironically that he already has a production team already working on the production of a Rassie Erasmus type video. criticism of the refereeing decisions taken during the Guinness Six Nations opening match at Murrayfield.
England looked set for victory after a dominating second-half effort saw them overturn a 6-10 interval insufficient to lead 17-10 with 16 minutes remaining when they called their lone scorer Marcus Smith down.
However, they soon imploded, with yellow card Luke Cowan-Dickie conceding a penalty try and Scotland then followed up with a penalty in a scrum after loose Joe Marker got stuffed with a throw to the lineout without an English hooker on the pitch.
England then disallowed a game-tying penalty to come down the line in the dying minutes and the game then ended in frustration, with referee Ben O’Keeffe choosing not to reward scrum dominance with the penalty which would have allowed the replacement of George Ford. the chance to draw with the last kick.
Jones refused to be drawn into criticizing the referee. He instead brushed off the question, referring to Springboks director of rugby Erasmus, who filmed a 62-minute rant after the first Lions Test last July, criticism which earned him a two-month full ban from all rugby .
“Eddie Jones was booed by local fans and he would have been booed by fans outside if they had hung around long enough to see him off the premises, with@heagneyl ??? at Murrayfield.#EnglandRugby #GuinnessSixNations #SCOvENG #Scotland
—RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) February 5, 2022
“It was three points at the end and the referee becomes quite influential in those situations. Wait for the video, man. It comes out. I have the production team on it now. It’s called “Rassie In Love With”. It’s my production team, so I’m preparing,” Jones joked during his post-game press conference.
“We have only ourselves to blame”, he added, adopting a more serious reflection on the defeat in the first round. “We’re massively disappointed to have lost and Scotland deserved to win, but we dominated a lot of the game but didn’t get the points for dominance.
“At the end of the day rugby is a pretty simple game – if you dominate you have to get points and you have to get enough points to be ahead of the opponent at the end. The result is the result and it’s hard for us to start the tournament like this. We had a good preparation and played with a lot of dynamism and determination. We will go to Italy next week and we will do even better.
On Cowan-Dickie he said: “Luke is disappointed, it happens in the moment. He played exceptionally well and he’s very disappointed, but all the boys are supporting him. On removing the Smith talisman, he added: “We felt George could come in and do some work for us in the last 20 minutes.”
As for the costly decision to allow Marler to step into the lineout without asking sub Jamie George to take him, the coach commented: “We thought we would wait for a scrum because we wanted to keep the back rowers . At this point Scotland were moving the ball a lot and we felt we needed that third back rower. Certainly, I would take the blame for that.
“We kicked well. We forced a number of line drops and attacked well from there (in the first half). They defended very well. We were held over the line once. Could we have been a little more clinical in our attack? Yes, and we would like to do so in the future.
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