Eddie Jones’s side will have to chase points in Rome without any match practice to put pressure on Ireland
As the Rugby Football Union works out the financial cost of having to cancel Sunday’s match against the Barbarians because a number of the invitation club’s players burst their Covid bubble, Eddie Jones will be concerned that a lack of match practice will cost England the Six Nations title when they face Italy in Rome next Saturday.
The RFU rearranged the match against the Barbarians, which was originally scheduled to be played in May, to give England, who have not played for more than seven months, a warm-up for Italy, who played Ireland in Dublin on Saturday. The team will be underdone in Rome and Jones’s preparations are further disrupted by the unavailability until Sunday of players from Exeter and Wasps because they were involved in the Premiership final at Twickenham.
Written by Paul Rees
This news first appeared on https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2020/oct/24/barbarians-foul-up-will-leave-england-undercooked-for-italy-points-chase under the title “
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