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Patient approach can unlock the door for England, insists Ford

 

Game plan: George Ford says cool heads are needed
Game plan: George Ford says cool heads are needed

By Duncan Bech

George Ford has warned England they must complete the grinding down process before looking to build a score against the USA in today's World Cup clash.

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A feature of Japan 2019 has been the grit shown by tier two nations in holding out against their more established rivals, and Eddie Jones' men have already experienced the determination of stubborn opposition.

A 35-3 victory over Tonga in Sapporo successfully opened the quest to lift the Webb Ellis Trophy but it was an underwhelming start as England laboured when confronted with the Islanders' persistence.

Ford, who leads the team for the second Pool C encounter with Owen Farrell rested to the bench, insists patience is essential against the Eagles.

"It's going to take some real good discipline and sticking to the plan to get the result," Ford said. "We need to put them under pressure and hopefully score a few points off the back of that.

"Like any Test, you've got to do the tough stuff first - in the first 15-20 minutes especially - to see where the rest of the game is going to go."

England face the first true examination of their preparations for the humidity of Japan.

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When the Pool C showdown kicks off, the temperature will be 25 degrees with a humidity of 78 per cent and they have already been given an indication of the condition during the eve of match captain's run.

Jones has prepared for the conditions by undertaking two heat camps in Treviso during the summer and after overcoming Tonga in the less oppressive atmosphere of the Sapporo Dome, they are braced for a more aggressive climate.

Scrum-half Ben Youngs said after training yesterday: "Ball control is an area we'll look to improve on judging by running around out there just now.

"It's pretty humid and pretty slippery. It will be a good chance to test how well we've worked on that because training has been pretty minimal this week, just walk throughs."

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