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Japan rugby stuck in 1950s, says Eddie Jones

Date
Japan coach Eddie Jones.

Japan coach Eddie Jones. Photo: Getty Images

TOKYO: Japan coach Eddie Jones on Wednesday slammed the country's rugby development structure for being stuck in the past and urged players to be more aggressive if they want to challenge the best teams.

While announcing a 30-man squad for next month's tour of Europe, Jones said he had avoided the urge to blood young players as they were far from ready for the top-flight.

"I haven't picked any university students as we only have a short preparation and the level of rugby they are playing makes it impossible for them to play Test-match rugby by November 10," he told Japanese media.

"I watched a university game at the weekend and it was like I was in a time warp. I thought I was in the 1950s," he said, according to Kyodo news agency.

"I have to be honest, it's just not rugby. I don't know what they do in training but they have got to change."

The Australian took charge of Brave Blossoms in April, leading them to a fifth straight Asian Five Nations crown a month later.

Since then, however, they lost all three matches in the Pacific Nations Cup in June, when they also proved no match against the French Barbarians in two games at home.

His stated goal is to develop Japan into a top-10 nation before the 2015 World Cup in England.

The Brave Blossoms will play Test matches against Romania on November 10 and Georgia on the 17th, before taking on a Basque select team on November 21 and the French Barbarians four days later.

"The players that have not made the squad are not doing what they are supposed to be doing in the Top League," he said referring to Japan's nine-year-old rugby union league.

"George Smith runs around like he's got spiders on him because no one wants to tackle him," Jone said, citing the former Wallaby flanker who retired from international rugby in 2010 and now plays for the Top League's Suntory Sungoliath.

"He should be an inspiration to every backrow forward in Japan. He's the same size but he has the highest work rate," Jones said.

"But no one ever hits him. You need to see that attitude of 'I'm going to smash him,' if you want to make a mark in world rugby."

Romania are currently ranked 18th and Georgia 15th in the world, close to 16th-placed Japan, which hope to improve their standing before they host the World Cup in 2019.

AFP

Rugby Internationals 2014

Round 1
Sat, 07 JunTimes shown AEST
SAM 18 vs TGA 18 Report Stats
FJI 25 vs ITA 14 Report Stats
NZL 20 vs ENG 15 Report Stats
AUS 50 vs FRA 23 Report Stats
Sun, 08 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 47 vs WXV 13 Report Stats
ARG 17 vs IRE 29 Report Stats
USA 6 vs SCO 24 Report Stats
CAN 25 vs JPN 34 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 2
Sat, 14 JunTimes shown AEST
SAM 15 vs ITA Report Stats
FJI 45 vs TGA 17 Report Stats
NZL 28 vs ENG 27 Report Stats
AUS 6 vs FRA Report Stats
Sun, 15 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 38 vs WAL 16 Report Stats
CAN 17 vs SCO 19 Report Stats
ARG 17 vs IRE 23 Report Stats
USA 29 vs JPN 37 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 3
Sat, 21 JunTimes shown AEST
ARG 19 vs SCO 21 Report Stats
FJI 13 vs SAM 18 Report Stats
JPN 26 vs ITA 23 Report Stats
AUS 39 vs FRA 13 Stats
NZL 36 vs ENG 13 Report Stats
Sun, 22 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 31 vs WAL 30 Report Stats
USA 38 vs CAN 35 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 4
Sun, 29 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 55 vs SCO 6 Report Stats
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Round 5
Sun, 02 NovTimes shown AEDT
BAR 36 vs AUS 40 Report Stats
USA 6 vs NZL 74 Report Stats
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Round 6
Sun, 09 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 24 vs SAM 13 Report Stats
ENG 21 vs NZL 24 Report Stats
WAL 28 vs AUS 33 Report Stats
FRA 40 vs FJI 14 Report Stats
IRE 29 vs RSA 15 Report Stats
SCO 41 vs ARG 31 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 7
Sun, 16 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 18 vs ARG 20 Report Stats
ENG 28 vs RSA 31 Report Stats
WAL 17 vs FJI 13 Report Stats
SCO 16 vs NZL 24 Report Stats
FRA 29 vs AUS 26 Report Stats
Mon, 17 NovTimes shown AEDT
IRE 49 vs GEO 7 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 8
Sun, 23 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 6 vs RSA 22 Report Stats
SCO 37 vs TGA 12 Report Stats
IRE 26 vs AUS 23 Report Stats
WAL 16 vs NZL 34 Report Stats
ENG 28 vs SAM 9 Report Stats
FRA 13 vs ARG 18 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 9
Sun, 30 NovTimes shown AEDT
ENG 26 vs AUS 17 Report Stats
WAL 12 vs RSA 6 Report Stats
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