Eddie Jones will prevent England from basking in the glory of their breathtaking World Cup victory over New Zealand in order to sharpen minds on the only prize that really matters.
South Africa edged Wales 19-16 in a grim second semi-final at International Stadium Yokohama to set-up a repeat of the 2007 global showpiece that was won 15-6 by the Springboks.
Jones was present in the stands alongside defence coach John Mitchell to watch the Springboks outmuscle Warren Gatland’s men with a conservative gameplan based on forward power.
England have surged to the summit of the global rankings at the All Blacks’ expense and Jones insists they have the higher gear needed to lift the Webb Ellis Trophy for a second time.
When asked about his noticeable lack of jubilation at having masterminded possibly the greatest victory in Red Rose history, Jones said: “It’s because we’ve got another week to go.
“We want to be the best in the world and we’re not. So we’re not going to be satisfied until we’re the best in the world.
“It’s about making sure no-one gets too far ahead of themselves and this team has got no reason to, because we haven’t achieved what we want to achieve. All it’s done is give us another week in the comp.
“It’s a mind-set, it’s the attitude of the players, the messaging the staff gives the players and the messaging the leadership gives the players.
“We’re going to have to find another level and it’s definitely there. Definitely there. Definitely there. It was a good performance but we’ve got to play better next week.”
Jones will have seen the way Damian de Allende helped dismantle Wales with his strong running at inside centre and could reconsider his midfield axis.
George Ford was outstanding at fly-half against New Zealand but in the quarter-final he made way for Henry Slade in order to sure up the defence knowing the onslaught that was coming from Samu Kerevi.
De Allende’s presence might have a similar impact on selection even though Ford and Owen Farrell were among the highest tacklers in Yokohama on Saturday.
“Yeah they (Ford and Farrell) defended well against New Zealand but next week is another situation,” Jones said.
“We’ll look at how we need to play and what the opposition are going to bring to the party and then we’ll decide on selection.
“The players are at the end of seven weeks so recovery is so important – physical and mental. The mind-set you create during the week is very important.
“And it’s about not inventing shadows. Everywhere you look, there are shadows, so you have to make sure you are looking at the right shadows.”
Provided by Press Association Sport
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