Sport Rugby-England's Jones changes mind on Itoje's captaincy credentials

09:00  08 december  2021
09:00  08 december  2021 Source:   reuters.com

Today's rugby headlines as coach backs Jonathan Davies to reclaim Wales spot and S4C to show English Premiership rugby

  Today's rugby headlines as coach backs Jonathan Davies to reclaim Wales spot and S4C to show English Premiership rugby Here are your rugby morning headlines for Tuesday 23 November . Peel backs Foxy to wrestle back Wales jersey Scarlets coach Dwayne Peel has backed Jonathan Davies to nail down a Six Nations starting spot for Wales. Two-time Lions tourist Davies wasn't involved in Wales' last two matches of the autumn against Fiji and Australia - with Wayne Pivac putting it down to wanting to look at other centre options.

Eddie Jones has backed Maro Itoje to become England captain , reversing his view that the forward is not suited to the role. Jones had claimed that Itoje was “very inward-looking” and “doesn’t influence people off the field” and revealed that he had sent the 27-year-old to acting classes to improve his communication skills. However, in an exclusive interview with Brian Moore' s Telegraph podcast, the England head coach said that he has now changed his mind , insisting the Saracens second row has matured impressively over the past six months.

Maro Itoje ’ s hopes of captaining the British & Irish Lions in South Africa have been boosted after Premiership Rugby Limited finally agreed to release players once their clubs’ domestic campaigns are over, ensuring he will be available for the key warm-up Test against Japan. Itoje is among the leading candidates for the captaincy this summer and was last week endorsed by Sam Warburton, who led the two previous tours under Warren Gatland. A row over player release with the 12 Premiership clubs and Saracens – at present in the Championship – had threatened to prevent him from joining up with the

(Reuters) - England head coach Eddie Jones has changed his mind on Maro Itoje's potential as a future captain, saying that he has seen the Saracens lock mature a great deal over the past six months.

FILE PHOTO: Autumn International - England v South Africa © Reuters/PAUL CHILDS FILE PHOTO: Autumn International - England v South Africa

Jones wrote in his book "Leadership" that Itoje was "too inward-looking" for the role, but told the Telegraph on Tuesday he was moving in the right direction.

"I've never seen a guy mature as much as he has in the last six months so it's been a really good period for him," Jones said.

"I'm going to contradict myself -- and contradiction's a big part of life -- but I've got no doubt in the future he will captain England. Whether that's in my time or someone else's time."

Anger as young boy faces 'appalling, foul-mouthed' behaviour and 'vomit-covered toilets' at Wales rugby game as WRU tell drunks to stay away

  Anger as young boy faces 'appalling, foul-mouthed' behaviour and 'vomit-covered toilets' at Wales rugby game as WRU tell drunks to stay away Seven-year-old son Tomos Jones was attending his first Wales autumn international campaign . But, instead, they have been left with a bitter taste in their mouths because of the drunken, foul-mouthed and anti-social behaviour they encountered at the Principality Stadium. Debenture holder Martyn, a fan of some 40 years who has been to more than 300 Wales games, took his son to the first three matches against New Zealand, South Africa and Fiji. He was uncomfortable with some of the things Tomos had to hear and experience in those games, but things came to a head during Saturday’s clash with Australia.

Itoje in action for England U18 in 2007 Credit: Getty Images. “I went into a units session for the Saracens forwards and, again, couldn’t get anywhere near the ball. I was getting lifted too high, too early, my shape was breaking a little bit in the air. “I got on really well with Peter O’Mahony during the Lions tour. It was very refreshing to hear a slightly different take on similar issues. Alun Wyn Jones has his own style as well. With all these things, you can pick ideas and mix them with your own.”

England head coach Eddie Jones believes Maro Itoje is being singled out by officials for his reputation after conceding five penalties against Wales but will not pursue a complaint against referee Pascal Gaüzère. Jones , however, said that Itoje only needs to modify rather than overhaul his approach to pushing the envelope of the laws. “He is one of the best players in the world and he plays the game on the edge,” Jones said. “I can remember the same sort of discussion being had about George Smith at one stage.

Jones also praised Itoje's contribution in England's wins over Tonga, Australia and South Africa last month, adding that the 27-year-old had been more directly involved in team communication in recent outings.

"He is really moving in the right direction and it was interesting the role that he played in the team during the autumn," Jones said. "He took on the role responsible for team communication.

"It is when the team get together to talk about things they need to talk to. And no one's done a better job than he has done so I'm really pleased with the way he is moving."

(Reporting by Aadi Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford)

His brother plays for Hearts but it’s rugby all the way for Glasgow Warriors Rory Darge .
His brother signed for Hearts but it was rugby all the way for Rory Darge growing up in East Lothian. © Arron Darge was on the bench for Hearts in the Betfred Cup tie against East Fife this season. (Phot... The Glasgow Warriors forward is another product of the North Berwick talent factory and he is now on the cusp of a first Scotland cap.He probably would have had one already had Covid and injury not intervened but it is surely a matter when not if for the 21-year-old.

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This is interesting!