Jamie George says England’s response to their World Cup campaign being blown off-course by a typhoon has convinced them they can handle any coronavirus disruption.
The decision by the Irish government to postpone Ireland’s home Six Nations fixture against Italy on Saturday week increases the likelihood of the plug being pulled on England’s match in Italy seven days later.
The chances of that happening have not been helped by several European countries reporting their first cases of coronavirus.
England, like Ireland, have an outside chance of winning the championship should France slip up in their remaining two rounds.
And George took time away from preparing to face Wales at Twickenham on Saturday week to insist they would adapt to whatever occurs.
“We are focusing on what we know is ahead of us and that is the game against Wales,” said the Saracens star. “No one really has any idea what might happen as there is a serious issue going on.
“What we can do is take a huge amount of confidence from the way we dealt with and reacted to Typhoon Hagibis in Japan.
“We are very blessed to have an amazing staff and the playing group responds very well to situations like that. We are confident that we will be as well prepared as we can be if anything does happen.”
Hagibis killed 98 people, caused catastrophic destruction across eastern Japan and led World Cup organisers to cancel England’s pool clash against France.
An event without precedent in Rugby World Cup history could have completely flummoxed England.
Instead, Eddie Jones switched quickly to Plan B, flew his squad south until the danger had passed, then returned them to the tournament and won through to the final.
George recalled: “Within an hour or two, we were on a plane down to Miyazaki and had a brilliant training camp that set us up nicely for a quarter-final and semi-final.
“These things happen, it’s pretty out of our control. But Eddie speaks about it a lot: focus on what we can control.
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