England braced for bruising epic as they seek to storm Ireland’s citadel | Robert Kitson

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Victory in the most eagerly awaited Six Nations fixture in years would be among Eddie Jones’s finest achievements but Ireland’s nous may give them the edge

James Joyce once wrote: “When I die Dublin will be written in my heart.” England’s players and coaches may yet feel similarly if they can fly home with perhaps the most satisfying victory of Eddie Jones’s tenure. Win or lose, the visitors’ first outing of 2019 will define more than just their immediate Six Nations prospects.

It is not just the outcome that matters. For both sides it is about dealing with pressure of an intensity seldom found outside a World Cup knockout fixture, of locating answers to questions with career‑shaping implications. A beefed-up England may have the brawn but do they have the collective rugby intellect to outwit Joe Schmidt and his on-field lieutenant Johnny Sexton? Can Ireland cope with the unaccustomed weight of expectation that comes with their lofty world ranking?

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Written by Robert Kitson in Dublin
This news first appeared on https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2019/feb/01/england-ireland-six-nations-robert-kitson under the title “England braced for bruising epic as they seek to storm Ireland’s citadel | Robert Kitson”. Bolchha Nepal is not responsible or affiliated towards the opinion expressed in this news article.