Eddie Jones Admits He Got Two Massive Selections Wrong For The Rugby World Cup Final

Hindsight.

England head coach Eddie Jones has admitted in his new autobiography that he got two massive selections wrong for the Rugby World Cup final against South Africa in Yokohama earlier this month.

Jones’ side were defeated 32-12 by the Springboks despite going into the game as favourites after an incredible display against the All Blacks the previous week in the semi-finals.

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The England boss reckons he should have started Joe Marler instead of Mako Vunipola in the front-row and should have reverted to his backline from the quarter-final win over Australia with Farrell at 10 and George Ford on the bench.

“I accept that I made two selection mistakes for the final,” Jones wrote in his new autobiography ‘My Life and Rugby’, which is being serialised in The Times.

“I should have chosen Joe Marler ahead of Mako Vunipola at loosehead prop and reverted to the Owen Farrell-Manu Tuilagi-Henry Slade midfield we used against Australia.

Jones said you can never really know until the game starts and as a head coach sometime you just “rely on your gut” for selection.

“George Ford could have come off the bench when we had got into the game. But you never know until the game starts. You use the best available evidence and rely on your gut.”

“I had been right against Australia and New Zealand but, as it turned out, in the biggest game of our four-year cycle, I got it badly wrong.

“Hindsight is a wonderful teacher.”

You can read the full extract from Jones’ book in The Times here.