Rugby Union

England head coach Eddie Jones: I'm not talking to media until next Friday

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Football News

England head coach Eddie Jones is to implement a self-imposed media blackout in response to the outcry over his comments that he was concerned for the welfare of Ireland fly-half Johnny Sexton.

Jones heightened tension between the rival camps before Saturday's 21-10 RBS 6 Nations victory at Twickenham by stating that Sexton's parents "would be worried" about the whiplash injury the British and Irish Lion suffered against France.

Jones' willingness to bring Sexton's family into his pre-match gamesmanship was widely condemned and is known to have been viewed dimly within the Irish camp, but the Australian has no regrets and will not speak to the media again for almost two weeks.

"From this press conference onwards I'm putting a media ban on myself," Jones said at a feisty post-match press conference.

"I don't want to do any scaremongering or do anything that offends the media or offends people's parents.

"From now until next Friday before the Wales game I'm not talking to the media. So no-one will have to worry about scaremongering and all that type of thing.

"Mate, if I don't say anything you come away from the press conference and say it's boring.

"If I say something I'm scaremongering. I can't win, so the easiest way is that I don't come to the media conference."

When asked if he regretted mentioning Sexton's parents, Jones replied: "I don't regret anything. Why would I regret it? Ireland said he had whiplash injuries, not me.

"It's a sideshow - it's finished. The main event is over. We're not talking about the sideshow any more."

An emphatic but hard-fought victory over Ireland means England are the only team still capable of winning the Grand Slam, and a possible title decider against Wales looms in a fortnight's time.

Second-half tries from Anthony Watson and Mike Brown swept the Red Rose out of reach in their first match at Twickenham since being dumped out of the World Cup by Australia in October.

It was the best performance of Jones' brief reign with the development of the attack particularly pleasing, although the Australian admits his team should have won more convincingly.

"Ireland are the incumbent Six Nations champions so we expected a tough game. We left 10-15 points out there in the first half," Jones said.

"The structure of our attack was excellent, but the finishing wasn't. This was a decent step up. We needed to get a few things right technically.

"If we came off 30-10 winners we would be saying that was one of most impressive performances of all time."

When asked about the Grand Slam, Jones replied: "I'm still trying to work out what a Grand Slam is. All we want to do is beat Wales in two weeks."

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