England to play NZ in autumn 2018 for 1st meeting in 4 years

AP
By Associated Press, 13 September 2017

LONDON (AP) — England will play New Zealand for the first time in four years as part of a grueling set of autumn tests in 2018 for the northern hemisphere's top rugby team.

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The English have won 19 of their 20 test matches under Eddie Jones since the 2015 Rugby World Cup, facing all major nations except the top-ranked All Blacks in that run due to a quirk in the international fixture list.

Jones has wanted to measure the progress of his team by taking on New Zealand, and there was an aborted attempt to arrange a match between the sport's two current powerhouses this autumn.

England also will play South Africa, Australia and Japan at Twickenham in the autumn of 2018, a year out from the World Cup in Japan.

"Over the next year, we need to continue to develop a bullet-proof side that can find ways to win in matches," Jones said. "Our ambition is to be the No. 1 team in the world going into the World Cup in Japan."

AP
By Associated Press, 13 September 2017

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