England’s live scrum training with Wales threatens to pack a punch

• Eddie Jones sees face-off with Welsh as vital to building ‘world’s best scrum’
• England coach says he wants his pack to be really ‘challenged in that area’

England and Wales are not to start their autumn international campaigns until Saturday but the week’s spiciest contest may well unfold in Bristol on Monday morning. A live scrummaging session involving both countries’ packs certainly has all the necessary ingredients, with the England head coach, Eddie Jones, saying the Anglo-Welsh showdown will shape his front-row Test selection.

Perhaps sensibly, the exercise is being held behind closed doors given the precedent set by other sides in similar circumstances. As recently as this summer, a joint pre-season session involving Bath and Newport Gwent Dragons erupted when Tom Dunn, an England squad member, appeared to head butt his opposite number Rhys Buckley. The footage of both sets of forwards subsequently trading blows has been widely shared online.

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