England v South Africa: We want to get Twickenham bouncing again – Jamie George

England v South Africa: We want to get Twickenham bouncing again – Jamie George

Jamie George
Jamie George wins his 72nd cap when England face South Africa
Place: Twickenham Stadium Date: Saturday 26 November Kick-off: 17:30 GMT
Coverage: Live text commentary on the BBC Sport website and app, updates on BBC Radio 5 Live and BBC Sounds

England want to get Twickenham “bouncing again” by recreating the style and spirit of their free-scoring blitz against New Zealand, says hooker Jamie George.

“The atmosphere at the end of that game was incredible, one of the best atmospheres I’ve played rugby in,” said George at Rugby Union Weekly.

“We on the pitch have to give people things to shout about.

“We want to be able to do that for 80 minutes against South Africa and get Twickenham bouncing again.”

George, who will make his first start in the autumn when England face the Springboks on Saturday, says victory against the world champions would be the perfect way to end a disjointed campaign that has also featured a defeat to Argentina and a win over Japan.

Owen Farrell celebrates Will Stuart's try against New Zealand
England’s late surge denied the All Blacks revenge in the teams’ first meeting since the 2019 Rugby World Cup semi-finals

“It’s a must-win because we’re frustrated with how we went last weekend,” he said.

“There are some positives with the ways we played and the way we came back and the character we showed but… for both sides it’s a very important game.”

Manager Eddie Jones has challenged England to “light up” Twickenham with their play and winger Jonny May says the team is gradually developing the ability to switch styles in a bid to find a way to win.

“I think we’ve got more clarity on what we’re trying to be and what we are, from this time last year,” he told BBC Radio 5 Live.

“We’re trying to be an adaptable team, a smart team, a team that still has all the traditional aspects of English rugby but can play in slightly different ways.

“There are so many variables. You have to be a team that understands the story and theme of a game and can adapt to the weather, referees, injuries, TV referees and then take your chances in the game.

“That’s what we’re trying to achieve and it’s difficult. We’re talking about the top eight, 10 teams in the world being very close together and I think the team that can break out of that pack will be an all-round package.”

South Africa come to Twickenham on the back of a resounding nine-try victory over Italy, but fell short against Ireland and France, the world’s top-ranked teams, earlier this fall.

Center Lukhanyo Am is one of a number of high-profile Springbok absences as the World Player of the Year nominee recovers from knee surgery.

He believes his own side have fallen on the wrong side of some small margins so far this month.

“I think it will take advantage of big moments,” he told Rugby Union Weekly when asked what could be the deciding factor against England.

“When you face quality sides you have to be on top of your game and at times we lack big moments. It’s crucial. Those opportunities come and go, it’s a game of margins, converting or scoring a crucial try can be game-changing, whether you win or lose.

“These moments are very important.”

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