Autumn internationals: Scotland eye first NZ win, England aim for Ashes marker

Peter Kay and Sian Gibson in Car Share
Scotland beat Samoa 44-38 last time out
Autumn internationals
Coverage: Live BBC TV coverage of Wales & Scotland’s matches with live BBC Radio 5 live commentary and BBC Two highlights of England’s matches. Live text commentary of all Tests on BBC Sport website

Scotland believe their 31st meeting with New Zealand – at Murrayfield on Saturday – can result in their first win over the world’s number one team.

“They have lost three games in the last year – to Ireland, Australia and the Lions,” said centre Huw Jones.

“I do think we believe in ourselves enough. We feel we can beat them.”

Elsewhere, England meet Australia in the most high-profile of their autumn internationals, with Wales playing Georgia and Ireland hosting Fiji.

Scotland’s meeting with the All Blacks will be live on BBC Two from 17:00 GMT, with Wales’ match against Georgia on BBC One from 14:00 GMT.

England v Australia is live on BBC Radio 5 live with highlights on BBC Two (except in Northern Ireland) from 19:30 GMT.

All BBC coverage can be streamed through the BBC Sport website and app, alongside live text commentaries.

All Blacks arrive on British shores

‘We can beat them’ – Huw Jones on All Blacks

A 24-16 defeat in their most recent meeting in 2014 was as close as Scotland had got to the All Blacks in 23 years.

But Jones says a different mindset in the camp can help deliver victory for a team rated 12-1 outsiders by the bookmakers.

“A couple of years ago, maybe leading up to last year, we would never really have believed,” he said.

Scotland’s confidence has been fuelled by four wins in their past five Tests, including a 17-12 victory over Australia in Sydney in June.

“It was a big result for them and it hasn’t gone unnoticed,” said All Blacks centre Sonny Bill Williams.

“It’s really put us on the edge of our seats in our preparation knowing they can knock off the big boys. We’re here, we’re ready to play, but we know we’ve got a massive challenge.”

Saturday’s game will be the 14th Test in an arduous five months for the All Blacks that included a ferocious tied series with the British and Irish Lions and six wins out of six in the Rugby Championship.

Coach Steve Hansen rested the likes of Sam Whitelock, Sam Cane and Ryan Crotty earlier in the season in a bid avoid the dip in form that coincided with Ireland claiming their first-ever win over the All Blacks last November.

The trio are part of a strong New Zealand line-up on Saturday that also includes World Player of the Year nominees Rieko Ioane and Beauden Barrett.

The world champions won successive Tests against France in the first two matches of their northern-hemisphere tour.

England aim to set tone for Ashes

Jones and Cheika have indulged in some pre-match news conference sparring

England’s meeting with Australia comes five days before the first Ashes Test between the two countries’ cricket teams down under, and England captain Dylan Hartley hopes victory at Twickenham can start a trend.

“I’m going to watch the Ashes. I want England to win the Ashes and I want us to beat Australia at Twickenham,” he said, adding he had been in contact with cricket counterpart and Northampton Saints fan Alastair Cook.

England coach Eddie Jones, who lead his native Australia to defeat in the 2003 World Cup final against his current employers, added: “There’s nothing better than an Australia versus England sporting contest.”

Since losing to Australia on their way out of the 2015 World Cup in the group stages, England have won all four of their meetings with the Wallabies.

However, Australia are on an unbeaten seven-match run, and the build-up to the match has included some ‘sledging’ between the two camps.

Australia coach Michael Cheika has warned his side to expect the hosts to try and “bully” their way to victory, claiming late tackles on his half-backs were part of England’s tactics.

Jones denied his side set out to play outside the rules, adding Cheika should take up his concerns with “the referee not the media”.

Australia full-back Israel Folau is missing as he takes a break from rugby with Kurtley Beale, who scored the decisive try against Wales last weekend before posing in his underwear next to Prince William in the dressing room, in at 15.

Beale had a one-season stint with Wasps before returning to the Waratahs in Australia to pursue his international career

Another audition for Georgia

Georgia will attempt to strengthen their case for Six Nations involvement when they take on a much-changed Wales side in Saturday’s first match.

The tournament’s chief executive, John Feehan, ruled out any chance of Georgia joining the Six Nations