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Watson and Simmonds star as England down Italy

07 Febrero 2018

They made it look difficult at times but it's a case of job done for England as they escape the often tricky opening match against Italy with a bonus-point win on a final scoreline of 15-46.

"I don't think we've scrummed as well as that in the time I've been in charge of England", Jones said after his pack laid the platform for a victory of seven tries including two each for the Bath wing Ant Watson and Exeter No.8 Sam Simmonds.

Flyhalf Owen Farrell, George Ford and Jack Nowell added one apiece and Farrell kicked four conversions and a penalty.

Otherwise there were no new injury worries and although Italy managed a try in each half by wings Tommaso Benvenuti and Mattia Bellini, the obvious highlights were the blasting tries scored at high pace by the 23-year-old Simmonds in his fourth Test and first Six Nations start.

England lost scrumhalf Ben Youngs in the first half when he suffered a knee injury.

Youngs is the latest option to fall towards the medical staff and, ahead of far greater opponents, the English coach will have concern over the ease his defence was cut open by hopeful Italian breaks.

Italy's Tommaso Boni had a try chalked off for a forward pass following a video review early in the second half.

Ford, though, could land neither angled conversion and Youngs's sad exit on a motorised cart seemed to distract England momentarily.

Him exiting early meant a 70-minute run-out for Danny Care - England's most experienced substitute - he will now be tasked with seizing the No 9 shirt for good.

On, then, to the action: a more reliable guide to form than coaches, whether they're speaking in Australian riddles or Kiwi monosyllables.

The result sets up a mouth-watering encounter between England and Wales at Twickenham on Saturday.

Jones has described Italy as "mischievous" when reflecting on what they might have up their sleeves on Sunday.

"We knew that they were going to hang in there, but we ran away with it in the end".

England received pats on the back in the changing room from James Bond star and rugby fan Daniel Craig, while Jones planned an unaccustomed training session on Monday to help prepare for Wales.

It was not quite as quick as Jonathan Joseph's effort against Scotland (2min 16s), but England made a blistering start in Rome with Watson scoring inside three minutes.

In the opening 20 minutes, there was a sense of inevitably about Italy's performance - limp, gutless and error-ridden.

Roared on by the huge travelling support, England took little over two minutes to find their feet.

"He's different to Billy Vunipola and Nathan Hughes and sometimes it takes sides a bit of time to adjust to that, but our adjustment was good".

England enter the tournament as favourites and Jones has urged a crop of his stars to use the Six Nations to announce their arrival as truly world-class players.

Their title defence opens against Italy in Rome on Sunday and Robshaw believes the Australian's nous has draw the best from his players. It meant that England failed to win a Grand Slam - five matches, five victories - but they still won the championship.

"We know we're off in certain areas, we know the progress we have to make". For some people if may be texting them, other people it may be giving them a bit of a shouting, other people it is giving them that confidence and that love.

Watson and Simmonds star as England down Italy