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Last Updated: Tuesday, 21 October, 2003, 17:40 GMT 18:40 UK
Jones praises England
Australia coach Eddie Jones
Jones has often criticised England in the past
Australia coach Eddie Jones has rejected criticism of England's performance against South Africa.

England have been lambasted in the Australian media since defeating the Springboks 25-6 in a hard-fought but scrappy match in Perth on Sunday.

But Jones said: "I've read all the criticism about their performance against the Springboks. I must have been watching a different game."

Jones, a consistent critic of England under coach Clive Woodward, admitted England were, "absolutely first class".

England went in at half-time level with South Africa at 6-6 and could have been well behind, had Springboks fly-half Louis Koen not missed a number of kicks.

England scrum-half Matt Dawson, who missed the game with a hamstring injury, has admitted his side found the match difficult and did not play well.

But All Blacks great Zinzan Brooke told this website many other sides would have struggled against South Africa.

Brooke insisted England were still favourites for this year's tournament despite failing to find their best form against the Springboks.

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