Former England wing Austin Healey believes Eddie Jones’ team selections for Saturday’s Test could work out if they avoid an arm-wrestle with the Springbok forwards.
Jones has picked a rather inexperienced side for the Twickenham clash, with strong ball-carriers like injured duo Chris Robshaw and Billy Vunipola being replaced by the youthful but light-footed Tom Curry and Mark Wilson respectively.
In his column for The Telegraph, Healey, who played 51 Tests for England between 1997 and 2003, wrote that Jones’ picks won’t work out if they try to go toe-to-toe with the Bok forwards.
‘One reading of it is that Eddie Jones has potentially left his side severely underpowered against the most powerful team in world rugby; alternatively, he might be on the cusp of solving the two biggest problems that have plagued English rugby in the past 15 years.
‘Clearly, the risk is that the South African pack destroys England up front. The pack looks lightweight in comparison to the Springboks, particularly in the back row.
‘Yet I think the team selection is a clear attempt to make this a super high-tempo contest and to run the Boks off their feet.
‘It will be like watching a cheetah fight a lion. If the cheetah can tire the lion out with its speed then it has a chance, but if the lion gets the cheetah in its jaws, then it is game over.’
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