England v Australia: Dylan Hartley defends Dan Cole scrummaging

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Hartley defends England "rock" Cole
England v Australia
Venue: Twickenham Date: Saturday, 3 December Kick-off: 14:30 GMT
Coverage: Live on BBC Radio 5 live at 14:30 GMT; text commentary on BBC Sport website. Highlights on BBC 2 at 18:00

England captain Dylan Hartley has defended team-mate Dan Cole after Australia coach Michael Cheika accused the prop of scrummaging illegally.

Cheika said Cole had been "infringing the law since his career started probably, if not all of this year".

But hooker Hartley told BBC Radio 5 live: "You don't stumble across 60-odd caps scrummaging illegally.

"The directives we get back from the refs always say that England have a good, clean scrummage."

Hartley added: "I play against Cole a couple of times a year and it's always very difficult against him. He's a rock, like every tight-head should be.

"There's plenty for us to work on and we're looking for that complete scrummaging performance this weekend because this team is underpinned by a dominant set-piece and that's what we want to provide."

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Jones dreams of 'perfect' rugby

England's victory over Argentina last weekend was their 13th in a row and their 12th under head coach Eddie Jones - and a win over Australia in the final autumn international would equal their longest winning run, set across 2002 and 2003.

Cheika and his former Randwick team-mate Jones have exchanged frank views this week.

Jones, who led his native Australia to the 2003 World Cup final defeat by England has accused the Wallabies of "illegalities" in the set-piece, and said they "can't scrummage".

Cheika claimed Jones has "always operated with a chip on his shoulder" and tarnished his legacy with comments made in the summer when England completed a 3-0 series win in Australia in June, becoming the first touring side to secure a whitewash down under since South Africa in 1971.

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