Care and Joseph set to start for England

Eddie Jones has made little secret of England's plan to target Rhys Patchell in Saturday's crunch Six Nations clash with Wales, saying the fly-half faces "enormous pressure".

England coach Eddie Jones on Thursday Feb. 8, 2018 recalled Jonathan Joseph and urged the center to put inexperienced Wales flyhalf Rhys Patchell "under some heat" in the Six Nations match between the two fierce rivals on Saturday.

Jones suggested that a repeat performance against England would be a far tougher proposition for the rookie 24-year-old, while the Australian also boasted that other Wales players would be blinded by the light. "It's whether he has the bottle to handle it", Jones told a news conference.

"He can do a job for us from the start and Ben will come on and give us power and impetus, just as he did last week".

"He (Patchell) is surrounded by a number of players from his (Scarlets) region and that cohesion it brings, that familiarity, will hopefully stand up under the pressure of global rugby".

Wales go into the match with a starting line-up featuring 10 players from in-form Pro14 side Scarlets.

Davies got the ball rolling with the opening try - his 10th in 28 internationals - and further scores followed from Leigh Halfpenny (2) and Steff Evans for a first Welsh four-try bonus in the championship. England are a bit different, Wales are a bit different, and rugby is now different, certainly with some new laws and a new emphasis on certain aspects of play.

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"Wales have to get the ball wide and Patchell hasn't played much test-match rugby. We'll find out on Saturday", Jones said of six-cap Patchell.

The only two changes see Jonathan Joseph replace Ben Te'o at outside centre and Danny Care coming in for the injured Ben Youngs at scrum half.

On the Joseph decision, Jones added: "It's just my gut feeling with Joseph. And in my experience with players in their second game back from a long injury, it's always the most hard game".

Wales' win against Scotland came despite a mounting injury list, and Jones recognised Warren Gatland's side will have a different mindset.

"They had nothing to lose, and they played with a great freedom [last weekend]".

But claiming that Gatland had been "talking a lot this week" due to his confidence, he dismissed the Kiwi's claim that stemmed from England having one day shorter preparation after their trip to Rome last Sunday - a day after Wales beat Scotland. "He's confident. They're confident".

  • Tabitha Byrd