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England look into travel plans after rain delay

Eddie Jones’s side were late for training on Friday due to prolonged rainfall.

Owen Farrell trains on a sodden pitch at the International Stadium Yokohama (David Davies/PA)
Owen Farrell trains on a sodden pitch at the International Stadium Yokohama (David Davies/PA)

By Duncan Bech, PA England Rugby Correspondent, Yokohama

England will review their travel plans for Saturday’s World Cup semi-final against New Zealand after arriving late for today’s captain’s run.

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Eddie Jones’ squad were delayed by 10 minutes in their 30-mile journey from the team hotel in Tokyo Bay to International Stadium Yokohama due to heavy rain that caused traffic problems.

Their seismic knockout clash against the All Blacks kicks off at 5pm local time and assistant coach Neal Hatley revealed that although the rain is expected to clear tomorrow, the travel logistics will be re-examined.

“The rain was a bit of a factor. It was about 10 minutes longer than expected so we’ll have a look,” Hatley said.

“The logistics have been brilliant through the whole tournament and it’s not due to rain tomorrow. I’m pretty sure we’ll get that 10 minutes back.”

Meanwhile, Courtney Lawes vowed that New Zealand will know exactly who England’s players are by the end of the semi-final.

All Blacks lock Brodie Retallick was on Monday forced to recall the moment he said ‘Michael Laws’ when asked which of Stuart Lancaster’s 2014 tourists he knew, mistakenly referencing Courtney.

Michael Laws is a Kiwi politician and former Mayor of Whanganui.

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England coach Eddie Jones traipses over water during the captain’s run (David Davies/PA)

“If they don’t know, then they will tomorrow, it’s just one of those things mate! We will just get on with it,” Lawes said.

“We’re excited. None of us have played in a semi-final before, it’s a challenge but we’re very excited to get out there.

“They have gone with a pretty big pack. That’s fine with us. We are used to that. In terms of the line-out (Scott Barrett) is a good jumper.

“He’s normally a second row forward. But I think we have addressed that and have the callers and jumpers to deal with it.

“They have a great pack and have a lot of great players across the board – but so do we. We have two of the best packs in the world going up against each other.”

PA

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