Eddie Jones - 'I woke up hoping Fiji result was different'

Eddie Jones - 'I woke up hoping Fiji result was different'

Eddie Jones, head coach

On his thoughts about defeat to Fiji:

"We're moving on to Wales now. This is the best coaching week, best playing week. These are the weeks you remember when you are under the pump quite a lot and you have got to produce a good performance. 

"We are starting to set our sights on how we need to play against Wales. The Fiji game, at the start of the game we couldn't find our rhythm. 

"Physically we got a little bit struck by them and that put us on the back foot and we never found our rhythm until maybe the last 20 minutes when we played with a bit more fluency and a bit more like ourselves.

"It's a harsh learning experience, but one that we will take into the Wales game."

On how will he motivate players ahead of Pool C game with Wales on Saturday:

"There are no problems with motivation. This team cares a lot about their performance. Sometimes you play a team that's a little bit better than you and if they're better at the start of the game that puts you off. 

"We are all still searching for answers. None of us has the 100 per cent answer. But we have ideas about where the game came unstuck.

"But Wales are a completely different team. They grind away at you whereas Fiji is power. The surprising thing about getting beaten by Fiji is that we scored two tries to one and their try came from an innocuous kick that we failed to handle."

On Jordan Uelese, will he play against Wales:

"No, he is a 12-day stand down."

On if skipper Will Skelton and Taniela Tupou will be available for final pool:

"The only thing we are worried about now is Wales and they are unavailable for Wales."

On how does this week compare to other times in his coaching career:

"This is one of the biggest challenges for this team and personally for the coaching staff. We know how we want to play against Wales and we are going to work really hard to get the players back on track.

"When you have a loss like this it knocks you around a bit. It knocks you emotionally and team ethics wise. You start seeing shadows in every corner of the room.

"There is noise from outside which you have to handle. That's the challenge for the coaching staff this week, to make sure they have got the right noise."

On if he will advise players to keep off social media:

"That's an individual choice for each player. They make their own decisions on how they deal with social media. Everyone makes a choice on how they run their lives."

On if he fears Wales will target fly-half Carter Gordon:

"There's no team in the world that doesn't target the opposition 10. They are the conductor of the team and if you can get to them you get to them.

"There's various ways you can look after your 10 and we'll have a look at that this week."

On if this is a week for tough love:

"I don't know what your description of tough love is, mate."

On in terms of selection and putting best team on field:

"We do that every week, mate."

On if Fiji result is good learning curve for Rugby World Cup 2027:

"The only thing we are worried about is Wales this week. We'd be happy to play them tomorrow if they wanted to play. We'd get the television organised. We can't wait for the challenge."

On if he has watched replay of Fiji game:

"I have had enough time to look at it. I woke up in the morning hoping the result was different but it was still the same.

"It reinforced initial impressions that we got knocked off our kilter the first 30 minutes of the game and were never really able to recover until the last 30.

"I thought our young finishing bench did really well and put us in a position to win the game and we weren't quite good enough."

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