Eddie Jones has just a few days to come up with a decent excuse as to why he won’t pick Don Armand in his England squad for the upcoming Autumn Internationals.
The Exeter back row has been in sparkling form of late, as he has been most of his career, and yet has failed to pick up more recognition from the national side: winning his one and only cap as a second half substitute in the first test against Argentina earlier this summer. Jones has previously fudged the exact reason why the Chiefs’ openside hasn’t been given more of a chance, and there’ll be real interest in what he says should he not select Armand once more.
Speaking after the second round of European Rugby where Armand spearheaded an impressive Exeter Chiefs’ win in Montpellier, Jones seemed to imply there was work still to be done with a string of vague and bewildering metaphors.
“Aw geez, I don’t know mate. The door is still open. It has two way hinges. There’s loads of really good back row players in England at the moment like James Haskell and Chris Robshaw and Neil Back. Don can still buy a ticket; he can fill in a membership form. But Billy Vunipola could be back from injury sooner than we think. I like Don, I really do, but are we sure he’s even English? Have you heard him speak? I think he’s German. What about Brexit? I’ve got a loads of European pint glasses lined up, he can fill one up for sure. He can drink, can’t he? If he can’t, I’ll get him to room with Denny.”
No, we haven’t a fucking clue either. Eddie Jones will announce his squad on Thursday. England play Argentina, Australia and Samoa this November.