George wary of Springbok 'talisman' Marx

Jamie George (Getty Images)
Jamie George (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Jamie George says England must nullify talisman hooker Malcolm Marx in order to beat South Africa in their first November Test on Saturday.

Kick-off is at 17:00 SA time.

According to the official England Rugby website, it will be the fourth time this year that Eddie Jones’ men face the Springboks, having lost their June series 2-1, and George is motivated by the challenge of taking on someone he sees as the best player in his position in the world.

“Marx is a brilliant player, a talisman for them, and very physical player that offers a lot around the loose. His set piece is also very good,” said the Saracen.

“If we can nullify the positive aspects of his game then we will go a long way to winning it.

“I want to be the best hooker in the world, and you need to challenge yourself against the best players out there.”

George started all three Tests against Rassie Erasmus’ side in mid-year - a series Marx was not part of - and he will be hoping to improve his 50% win ratio against the Springboks come Saturday.

“It’s probably what we need as a forward pack,” explained the 28-year-old.

“We’ve spoken a lot about how they pride themselves, throughout history really, on their lineout and scrum as the heart of their rugby performance. It’s going to be a big test for us but having them up first is what we need; it switches us on.”

“These guys are talented, strong, keen and have instilled us with a lot of confidence so there is no worries about being inexperienced; they are ready to rip in,” he added.

“They are going to have some new players, we are going to have some new players, and it is a good opportunity to start the autumn off well.”

South Africa are a team in form, having finished second in the Rugby Championship, after two sublime performances against the All Blacks.

They recorded a 36-34 away win over New Zealand, before being pipped in the final moments of the return fixture 32-30.

“South Africa are such a physical team one to 15, no matter who they pick they pride themselves on that and we are aware of it,” added George.

“Despite the fact we played a few months ago this is a new season, a fresh start, and to be able to put in a good performance against a strong South Africa team is going to put us in good stead going forward for the three games after.”

The hooker has more Test caps than eight of his forward counterparts retained by head coach Jones earlier this week put together, but insists the lack of experience up front is not an issue.

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