Eddie Jones focuses on Grand Slam

England 25 Wales 21: Eddie Jones has calmed England’s Six Nations title celebrations because an even greater prize is within reach as he targets a precious Grand Slam.

Eddie Jones focuses on Grand Slam

For the first time since 2011, the Red Rose were crowned champions after their thrilling 25-21 victory over Wales on Saturday and France’s 29-18 defeat to Scotland swept them over the finishing line with a round to spare.

The Six Nations title had never before been won as early as the penultimate weekend and the silverware, which will sit beside the Triple Crown at Twickenham, ends a dispiriting run of four successive runner-up finishes.

More treasured riches are on offer in Paris next Saturday, however, when England will seek to complete their first Grand Slam since Martin Johnson’s World Cup winners of 2003 achieved the feat ahead of their global success.

“The emotions were a bit mixed to be honest,” Jones told the BBC.

“It’s obviously nice to win the championship, but as a team we feel like we haven’t achieved what we want to achieve and that’s the Grand Slam.

“If we prepare well, we’ll do the business. We’ll go to Paris confident.

“France were always going to be a difficult side and they showed at times against Scotland that they can play sublime rugby. At other times it’s not so sublime, so we need to make sure they don’t have too many sublime moments.

“Winning the title is a fantastic achievement by the team. The squad is still very much the same one from the World Cup, so the squad has changed themselves and the real credit goes to the players.”

Jones watched Scotland prevail at Murrayfield from the squad’s Surrey training base and met with England captain Dylan Hartley after the final whistle.

“We didn’t know whether to shake hands, give each other a hug or just get on with business, so we shook hands,” Jones said.

“We decided what we’ll do tonight and what we’ll do for the rest of the week. We’ll have our normal squad meeting after dinner and then we might go down to the bar and have a couple of beers.”

Asked which of his players had impressed him most during the tournament, Jones singled the deposed captain from the World Cup who has been switched from openside to blindside flanker.

“So far, it would have to be Chris Robshaw. He’s been absolutely outstanding,” Jones said.

“To go from where he was at the end of the World Cup to where he is now, has been a fine achievement.

“Everyone in the team appreciates the work he does on and off the field and behind the scenes.

“He’s one of those blokes who at the end of training is always helping others with areas of their game. He’s been colossal for us.”

ENGLAND:

Brown, Watson, Joseph, Farrell, Nowell, Ford, Youngs, Marler, Hartley, Cole, Itoje, Kruis, Robshaw, Haskell, B Vunipola.

Replacements:

M Tuilagi for Ford (64), Daly for Joseph (74), Care for Youngs (63), M Vunipola for Marler (56), Cowan-Dickie for Hartley (71), Launchbury for Kruis (78), Brookes for Robshaw (71), Clifford for Haskell (67).

WALES:

Williams, Cuthbert, J Davies, Roberts, North, Biggar, G Davies, Evans, Baldwin, Lee, B Davies, Jones, Lydiate, Warburton, Faletau.

Replacements:

Priestland for Biggar (74), Webb for G Davies (63), James for Evans (53), Owens for Baldwin (53), Francis for Lee (53), Charteris for Jones (63), Tipuric for Warburton (56). Not Used: Anscombe.

Referee:

Craig Joubert (South Africa).

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