Eddie Jones admits the demons of England’s harrowing collapse in Cardiff four years ago will always linger, but is convinced they will remain dormant tomorrow.
Wales were crowned 2013 champions after a 30-3 rout at the Principality Stadium denied Stuart Lancaster’s men a Grand Slam on a traumatising final day of the RBS 6 Nations for the English.
Two years later the defeat was avenged but with 10 survivors present when the rivalry is renewed on Saturday, Jones has discussed the ordeal with his squad and even Rugby Football Union chief executive Ian Ritchie.
“There’s always shadows in the corners. They’re always there and can always come out,” Jones said
“We’ve spoken about those shadows this week, but I think the team has moved on.
“Teams go through maturity cycles and to have one of those experiences is a life-changing experience and you never want to go back there. I was speaking to Ian Ritchie before. He came and watched training. He was there in 2013.
“You don’t like that feeling and therefore you learn to control your emotions to not allow to get involved in that again.
“While the Australian is braced for mischief-making in the Welsh capital, he insists his Grand Slam champions are enthused rather than fearful of the challenge that awaits.
“We’re prepared to win and we’re prepared for any shenanigans that might go on - and we’re looking forward to it,” Jones said.
“They’re a cunning lot the Welsh aren’t they? They always have been. They’ve got goats, they’ve got daffodils, they’ve got everything. Who knows?
“We’re bloody excited about playing there to be honest. It’s a great opportunity.
“We were disappointed about how we played against France and it’s an opportunity to play in one of the great stadiums of the world.”