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Picking Marland Yarde over Chris Ashton was an easy call for Eddie Jones

Published 22/05/2016

Marland Yarde has earned the call for the Australia trip from England coach Eddie Jones
Marland Yarde has earned the call for the Australia trip from England coach Eddie Jones

Eddie Jones insists opting for the promise of Marland Yarde over the finishing of Chris Ashton for England's tour to Australia was a simple decision.

Ashton has plundered 10 tries in eight matches since completing a 10-week ban for making contact with the eye area of Ulster's Luke Marshall, a sanction that forced him to miss the Grand Slam triumph.

Available once more, Ashton now finds himself overlooked with Jones preferring the raw power he recalls seeing in Yarde's marauding, try-scoring display against New Zealand in Dunedin two years ago.

"It wasn't a tough call to make, it was an easy call to make. Ashton has done well, but there are parts of his game that he needs to work on," Jones said.

"Chris Ashton has finished at club level and done very well, while Marland has got a lot of growth in him.

"He's a young player, probably maybe got his first cap too early, maybe didn't realise how important it was to work hard. He is now working hard on his game and he is the sort of wing we want.

"I always go back to the New Zealand game that England nearly won in 2014 when Marland scored that try when he ran over the top of Richie McCaw.

"If a kid can do that, he's got potential, so I've had a special interest in him. He's an interesting boy he wants to portray that gangster image, but he is a hard-working player.

"He can do things in our team that will really add to us. He can become a really good all-round player.

"I'm not saying Ashton can't be that - he's a great finisher and has been unlucky - but I want a bit more than that."

The contrasting fortunes of England's first and second choice full-backs is unlikely to disrupt the pecking order with Jones still favouring Mike Brown over Alex Goode.

While Brown's form has slumped in a poor second half of the season at Harlequins, Goode has been magnificent for Saracens culminating in him receiving the Premiership player of the season award on Wednesday.

Former England head coach Stuart Lancaster is among those calling for Goode to start, but Brown appears set to keep the jersey in the three-Test series against the Wallabies.

When it was suggested Goode had been impressive, Jones replied: "You think so? Err… look… he's played okay. I didn't think he was great in the European Cup Final.

"I pick the side and pick it on what I need for the team, I don't pick it on popular demands. There is always a contest between Alex and Mike and that is still the case.

"Mike's form hasn't been great for Harlequins but Harlequins weren't great in the last six weeks of the season, were they?

"There were extenuating circumstances for that, so let's just see what he does for us."

Young props Kyle Sinckler and Ellis Genge are among four uncapped players bound for Australia with Jones believing their challenging backgrounds could drive them to succeed.

"Genge is a bit like Sinckler, both of them had difficult backgrounds and now they have a fantastic opportunity to make their mark in the world through rugby," Jones said.

"Players like that are desperate. There is a company I did a little bit with, a blue chip company.

"The CEO said that when he recruits people, the first thing he does is look for the people from a broken family because they are desperate to succeed and it's the same in sport.

"You want people who are desperate to succeed. It's got to mean something to them for whatever reason. That's what they have."

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