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YOKOHAMA: Recalled fly-half George Ford won the battle of the playmakers to help England to a sensational 19-7 victory over New Zealand in the semi-final of the Rugby World Cup on Saturday (Oct 26).
England coach Eddie Jones had benched Ford for the quarter-final victory over Australia for a more combative centre partnership.
But with the All Blacks basing their gameplan around double playmakers Richie Mo’unga and two-time World Player of the Year Beauden Barrett, Jones recalled Ford at fly-half with skipper Owen Farrell sliding out to inside centre to offer up the same option.
New Zealand coach Steve Hansen had said he wanted “a game for the ages” and that wish was granted but not how he would have liked, as England’s forwards bullied their opposite numbers.
Childhood friends Ford and Farrell marshalled the midfield defence to great effect, all but curtailing Barrett’s contribution for mo
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