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The lesson England learned from State of Origin II

(Photo by Dave Rogers/Pool/AFP via Getty Images)

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After watching Queensland flounder in Origin II, England will attempt to overcome their own “vulnerability” in a bid to keep Eddie Jones’ perfect record alive in the upcoming three-Test series against the Wallabies.


Jones holds an astonishing 8-0 record against the Wallabies as coach of England, but his position is under threat following a poor Six Nations campaign and other mixed results.

The entire England squad was present at Optus Stadium on Sunday as NSW smashed Queensland 44-12 in Origin II.

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The Maroons had won the series opener 16-10 in Sydney, but were brought crashing back to earth in Perth.

England have used the dramatic Origin turnaround as a warning that Jones’ 8-0 record against the Wallabies means there’s a massive target on their back.

“I think it gives you a certain amount of vulnerability,” England assistant coach Matt Proudfoot said ahead of the series opener in Perth on Saturday night.

“You know the opposition is itching for your scalp. You’re vulnerable at stages like this.


“We went to State of Origin. Queensland did really well – unexpectedly – in the first game. In the second game it turned over.

“So when you win you’re vulnerable because your opposition is obviously hurting and wanting to come back.”

England came away with a famous 3-0 series win against the Wallabies in 2016.



They’re not daring to dream of pulling off a similar result just yet.

“A three-Test series is a long series … and the first one matters,” Proudfoot said.

“The first contact, the first 10 minutes matters. That’s success.

“It’s like being in a triathlon and getting out of the water last and trying to win it, it’s tough. The first game is going to be very important.”

Jones has urged his players to seize the moment, saying they can become a special team if they snare the series win.

Proudfoot says Jones has been very calm and determined in the lead-up to the series opener.

“He understands that this is going to be a very, very tough series,” Proudfoot said.

“You can see Eddie’s steeliness comes through on these occasions.”


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