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Ashton says All Blacks are beatable

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    08 Nov 2018     Getty Images

However, there would be no room for error, the former league international told Sky Sports.

"Anyone on the day is beatable, it's just that they [the All Blacks] win a lot more times than other teams do.

"They win so many in the last few minutes of the game, it's something you can't ever give up on. If you're off any one little bit of your game, you're going to get hit," he said.

Ashton, who has played 40 Tests, is back wearing the red rose after four years absence which included bans for eye-gouging and biting and a two-season stint with Toulon in French rugby, and had 10 minutes off the bench in the weekend win over South Africa.

"I was obviously over the moon, a little bit on edge watching the game. You want to be involved so much but I was so happy to get on. It's been a long time, four years is a long time in rugby," he said.

While he was part of the 2012 win, he didn't think England could take anything from that game.

"It was a big achievement to beat New Zealand who were on such a long winning streak at the time but there has been such a change in players, coaches and environment, the mindset is completely different," he said.

"We've moved on a lot so apart from personal achievement, I think it's hard for the group to take anything from it."

As to how England might approach the game, in which coach Eddie Jones has highlighted the need for discipline, Ashton didn't believe they needed to play with more pace.

"International rugby is high [pace], I know it may not have appeared it at the weekend, but it is high because attacking and defending is so quick. There are quite a few breaks in the game and when the ball is in play, it is going," he said.

"New Zealand probably keep the ball in play a lot more than others, they're likely to attack so I imagine it will be a very different game to last weekend."