McCall thanks Jones for selection policy

Saracens director of rugby Mark McCall has thanked England head coach Eddie Jones for the way he handled the Sarries internationals during the Old Mutual Wealth Series.

European champions Saracens had a number of England players represent the British & Irish Lions this summer and Jones took this into account during his team selection during the November series.

Owen Farrell was rested for the games against Argentina and Samoa while the workloads of Maro Itoje, Jamie George and a host of other Lions players were carefully managed using a reconditioning programmed that allowed England to increase the depth of the squad.

Jones, who was recently named World Rugby coach of the year, still managed to guide the side to three wins from three during their final action of 2017.

“They [England] could have done what they wanted with the players,” said McCall. “It was entirely up to [Eddie] and he stuck to the plan that he had talked about.

“I think it’s unusual for an international coach to see the bigger picture than those three Test matches. Eight years ago we didn’t have any internationals and it was a bit more easy, now it’s a bit more difficult.

“Of course it’s good to have guys coming through our academy, representing their country the way they are.

“This time last year they came back from four international matches and most of them had played most of the games, but this time it is not like that.”