England's 'great discovery'

Mon, 05 Feb 2018 11:59

REACTION: Eddie Jones feels England have unearthed a "great discovery" in the shape of Sam Simmonds after his outstanding Six Nations debut in a 46-15 drubbing of Italy.

Simmonds grasped his opportunity with both hands after starting at No.8 in the absence of the injured Billy Vunipola and Nathan Hughes at Stadio Olimpico.

The pacy back-row scored a second-half double and also provided an assist in a superb all-round display in Rome, where Anthony Watson (two), Owen Farrell, George Ford and Jack Nowell also went over.

Jones was delighted with the impact Simmonds made in his tournament bow after watching his side start the defence of their title with a bonus-point win.

"When the game opened up he was in his element," said the England head coach. "He's got gas and he does all our speed work with the backs as he’s that quick.

"He's a great discovery for us, he gives us great options at No.8."

Italy made a game of it before tiring late on, England taking advantage by scoring three tries in the last 13 minutes.

"It's a very positive start," said Jones.

"We always knew it was going to be a tough game, they played exceptionally well and full credit to Italy. Conor O'Shea is doing a great job coaching them and it was a good tough game of rugby and we ran away with it in the end."

England’s victory may have come at a cost, as scrumhalf Ben Youngs suffered a knee injury in the first half.

By Peter Thompson, Rugbypass

There are currently no matches being played
Sun, 22 April 2018
Brumbies v Jaguares 06h05 Canberra
Racing Metro v Munster 14h15 Paris
Fri, 27 April 2018
Munster v Ulster 22h00 Thomond Park
Kings v Cheetahs 22h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Treviso v Zebre 22h00 Stadio Monigo
Dragons v Scarlets 22h00 Rodney Parade
Edinburgh v Glasgow Warriors 22h00 Myreside
Cardiff Blues v Ospreys 22h00 Cardiff Arms Park
Connacht v Leinster 22h00 Sportsground
Worcester Warriors v Harlequins 22h00 Sixways
Wasps v Northampton Saints 22h00 Ricoh Arena
London Irish v Saracens 22h00 Madejski Stadium
Leicester Tigers v Newcastle Falcons 22h00 Welford Road
Gloucester v Bath 22h00 Kingsholm
Exeter Chiefs v Sale Sharks 22h00 Sandy Park
Hurricanes v Sunwolves 07h35 Wellington
Stormers v Rebels 13h00 Newlands
Sat, 28 April 2018
Reds v Lions 05h05 Suncorp Stadium
Blues v Jaguares 07h35 Eden Park
Brumbies v Crusaders 09h45 Canberra
Bulls v Highlanders 15h15 Loftus Versfeld
Team P W D L Pts
Ireland 5 5 0 0 26
Wales 5 3 0 2 15
Scotland 5 3 0 2 13
France 5 2 0 3 11
England 5 2 0 3 10
Italy 5 0 0 5 1