Brodie Retallick revealed to the media this week that the All Blacks attended England’s narrow 12-11 win over the Springboks at Twickenham on Saturday.
23 members of the All Blacks squad were already in London at the weekend as they were not involved in their side’s emphatic win over Japan in Tokyo which also took place on Saturday.
According to The Guardian, the All Blacks paid for the tickets themselves rather than requesting complimentary hospitality which would have notified the RFU and subsequently, Eddie Jones.
After the match, Jones said they were probably watching the game from their team hotel “drinking cups of tea, maybe having some scones, saying ‘oh, we’ll take these guys’. They’ll be confident and we can’t wait to get them.”
Unbeknownst to Jones, the All Blacks players had a much more up close and personal view of England’s performance as Retallick revealed:
“We were actually at the stadium so we weren’t having scones or a cup of tea,” he said. “It was physical, it’s probably not the style of rugby we’re used to but they’re extremely good at what they did. I thought they did a great job.”
Jones has named a 25-man squad who will continue preparations for Saturday’s clash with the world champions.