British & Irish Lions

French don't like 'brutal'? Then translate it better - Jones

Eddie Jones (Getty Images)
Eddie Jones (Getty Images)

Paris - England coach Eddie Jones was at his pugnacious best ahead of Sunday's Six Nations opener against France, mocking uproar in some French circles at his threat of "brutal" tactics.

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In naming his team Friday, Jones again warned his side would employ "absoute brutality" in the match against Les Bleus at the Stade de France.

"Someone asked me how to play," said the Australian wide-eyed in feigning shock. "What do you want me to say, 'we're going to have a cup of tea?!'

"It's what rugby's about, it has been since I've ever watched the game and will be as long as I watch the game."

Jones added: "It's a physical, confrontational game. You either win or lose on the gain line and that's going to be the case on Sunday."

When informed that some French people had been taken aback by the word brutal, an adjective which in the French language has clear connotations of violence, Jones was blunt: "You should translate it in a better way!"

Turning to the team named to play France, Jones insisted he was "very happy".

"We've had a very good preparation," he said.

"We allowed the players rto efresh a bit because in a lot of ways it's the start of a new season.

"The team's gelled together really well, there's a nice blend of experience and youth coming in, two guys coming in who've earned their spurs."

Uncapped Northampton fullback George Furbank gets his first start, while Bath prop Will Stuart will likely get his first cap from the bench.

"We're excited, it's a good team playing in front of 80,000 at the Stade de France against the young French team," Jones said.

Furbank, he added, is a "good rugby player".

"He reads the game well, he's decisive, he's got good core skills, runs good lines, a very impressive young fellow.

"He's very confident. He handles the pressure of games, of training, nothing seems to faze him too much, he'll just get on with it."

The two Vunipola brothers will be missing from the Paris showdown, No 8 Billy out injured with a fourth career broken froearm and prop Mako rested.

"We're resting him for this game," Jones confirmed of Vunipola. "More likely than not he'll play against Scotland.

"We've got a six-day turnaround so we selected two teams with that in mind."

Jones, who led England to the final of the Rugby World Cup in Japan where they lost to South Africa, was under no illusion of what lay ahead for his team.

"England against France are always big games. It's nicknamed 'Le Crunch' and there's a reason for that," he said.

"There's great historical rivalry between the two teams, it's a battle for supremacy

"We're looking forward to it, as I'm sure France are as well."

Teams:

France

15 Anthony Bouthier, 14 Teddy Thomas, 13 Virimi Vakatawa, 12 Gael Fickou, 11 Damian Penaud, 10 Romain Ntamack, 9 Antoine Dupont, 8 Grégory Alldritt, 7 Charles Ollivon (captain), 6 François Cros, 5 Paul Willemse, 4 Bernard Le Roux, 3 Mohamed Haouas, 2 Julien Marchand, 1 Cyril Baille

Substitutes: 16 Peato Mauvaka, 17 Jefferson Poirot, 18 Demba Bamba, 19 Boris Palu, 20 Cameron Woki, 21 Baptiste Serin, 22 Matthieu Jalibert, 23 Vincent Rattez

England

15 George Furbank, 14 Jonny May, 13 Manu Tuilagi, 12 Owen Farrell (captain), 11 Elliot Daly, 10 George Ford, 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Tom Curry, 7 Sam Underhill, 6 Courtney Lawes, 5 Charlie Ewels, 4 Maro Itoje, 3 Kyle Sinckler, 2 Jamie George, 1 Joe Marler

Substitutes: 16 Luke Cowan-Dickie, 17 Ellis Genge, 18 Will Stuart, 19 George Kruis, 20 Lewis Ludlam, 21 Willi Heinz, 22 Ollie Devoto, 23 Jonathan Joseph

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England 92/4 (28 ov)
Pakistan 326
loading... Live
England 92/4 (28 ov)
Pakistan 326
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