Eddie Jones: Wales look exhausted for Six Nations decider

Jose Verdugo
Marcha 15, 2019

The final weekend hardly needs extra hype as an unchanged Wales seek to win a third Grand Slam in 11 years but, with England needing Ireland to do them a favour, Jones has queried whether Gatland's side have enough in the tank to complete a clean sweep.

Wales play Ireland before England host Scotland, with Gatland advising Jones to focus on his own challenge.

His side produced their finest.

Last time we said, 'We don't mind, you choose.' They chose closed but made the field incredibly wet at the start of the game. They have made more tackles than anyone else in the tournament and they're playing against an Ireland side that seems to be peaking at the right time.

IRELAND: Rob Kearney; Keith Earls, Garry Ringrose, Bundee Aki, Jacob Stockdale; Johnny Sexton, Conor Murray; Cian Healy, Rory Best (capt), Tadhg Furlong; Tadhg Beirne, James Ryan; Peter O'Mahony, Sean O'Brien, CJ Stander.

"At the moment, I'm not sure about the roof".

Gatland believes Wales are fitter than any team in the championship.

"I'm just saying what I see, mate". I see a team that's looking exhausted, I see an Ireland team that's peaking but they're a good team Wales.

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"What the hell is Eddie Jones doing talking about our game?" said Gatland. 'If it was me, I'd be concentrating on playing Scotland. "We've got an opportunity to show we're the best team in the Six Nations and approaching the best team in the world, and we're not going to miss that opportunity". If you look at the stats, England have made a hell of a lot more tackles than us in this tournament.

"My advice to Eddie is to concentrate on the Scotland match".

Jones dropped Joe Cokanasiga, the wing, from the England squad yesterday as he made four changes from the 57-14 win against Italy, with Henry Slade, Jack Nowell, Mark Wilson and Ben Moon all restored to the starting line-up.

"We've worked in the down weeks and we've trained as hard as any team I've seen", said Gatland. "So we're going in a great direction and Saturday will be a bit of an explosion". We'll adapt to whatever conditions the game is played in.

England wing Joe Cokanasiga, right, was a surprise omission for their Calcutta Cup fixture with Scotland.

Jones said he had "a good plan in place" for the 21-year-old and that "he'll be ready by the World Cup". "I want him to play 100 tests for England - I don't want him to just play 10 tests".

"The players know that and if they believe that and you give them confidence". When you're a young batsman and your first test is against the West Indies in Perth and you bat No 3, you might not get too many runs.

Schmidt revealed Wales asked Six Nations chiefs for the roof to be closed due to poor weather forecasts, leaving the Ireland head coach mildly vexed but pledging to adapt either way. "Ultimately that is on me".

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