Jones has high hopes for Te’o

Date published: June 8 2016

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England head coach Eddie Jones branded the manner in which his predecessor selected Sam Burgess in the England World Cup squad as a 'confused strategy'.

Burgess, who switched codes in a bid to make a name for himself in his birth country, signed a three-year deal with Bath at the beginning of the 2014/15 campaign, but after just one season he returned to Australia and rejoined his former league club, South Sydney.

The selection of Burgess into the 2015 World Cup squad was motivated and pushed by former head coach Stuart Lancaster which meant Luther Burrell missed out on selection.

The 27-year-old Burgess made five appearances for England, including during last year's dismal World Cup campaign which saw the host nation failing to qualify for the quarter-finals.

Jones, who also recruited a league player in Ben Te'o, has said that the Worcester-bound Te'o has already proved himself worthy of his England call-up.

"Burgess was a non-event in England’s confused strategy at the World Cup but he would have been an excellent Test player if he’d had the will to stick at it," Jones told the Evening Standard.

"Rugby league is not a skilful game, it’s a game where you’ve got to hurt people. 

"Tough guys like Te’o bring something extra to a squad, a bit of an intangible, plus he has done the hard yards in 50-odd games for Leinster.

"That’s why I have high hopes for Ben Te’o. He’s cut it at the highest level of rugby league. 

"I saw one clip where Ben took the ball to the line and threw a short pass after carrying through the line on his previous play. He can mix it up with a good short-passing game and can off-load in contact. He can hit."

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