Danny Care defended Eddie Jones' England training methods after criticism from Bath owner Bruce Craig
England scrum-half Danny Care has defended head coach Eddie Jones’ training sessions, insisting the intensity is necessary to become the best team in the world.
South Africa vs England
June 9, 2018, 3:00pm
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Jones labelled Bruce Craig “the Donald Trump of rugby” after the Bath owner said the quantity of injuries sustained in England practice was “totally unacceptable”.
Craig’s comments came after Beno Obano last week became the fifth player from Bath to sustain a training ground injury since Jones took over in late 2015.
But Care, who has been rested for the tour of South Africa which kicks off on Saturday, believes Jones is introducing marginal gains necessary to compete at international level.
“We’re not the best team in the world at the moment, New Zealand are – and I’m pretty sure they train pretty hard,” Care told Sky Sports News.
“It’s about those one or two per cents you can try and make up and that’s pushing the intensity a bit, trying to train at a level ahead of what a game should be so then you come to the game and it should feel easier.
“We understand the training methods, we’re all buying into it and we’re all chasing that goal.”
Care said Bath had been unlucky with injuries suffered on England duty, but said they were largely “freak collisions” and that players are aware of the risks involved.
“I can see from an owner’s perspective why you might be annoyed some of your best assets aren’t available for the club but the players, I’m sure, won’t be holding anything against the England training,” he said.
Jones was on the coaching staff in South Africa’s 2007 World Cup triumph but led Japan to a shock win over the Springboks at the 2015 tournament.
2:24 Stuart Barnes believes England, who have lost three of their last four matches, are under greater pressure than South Africa to win Saturday’s first Test in Johannesburg
England lost only once in Jones’ first 25 games in charge but have since suffered four straight defeats to pile pressure on the Australian ahead of next year’s World Cup in Japan.
Care said Jones’ previous record proved his training methods have been correct, arguing it has only become an issue since the team have started losing games.
“To be the best team in the world you have to be the fittest team in the world,” said Care. “You have to take yourselves to levels no other team are training at.
“We want to be the fittest team in the world, we want to push boundaries to leave no stone unturned to lift that World Cup – that’s the dream in a year’s time.
“We’re trying to do everything possible to make that dream come true.”