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'Empty ****ing line' - Ex Wallaby demands answers from Eddie Jones

Eddie Jones, Head Coach of Australia, looks on at full-time following the Rugby World Cup France 2023 match between Australia and Fiji at Stade Geoffroy-Guichard on September 17, 2023 in Saint-Etienne, France. (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

Former Australia international Drew Mitchell has fired a verbal volley at Eddie Jones as the Wallabies’ Rugby World Cup fate hangs in the balance.


Defeat against Wales in Lyon on Sunday would signal Australia’s first pool-stage exit during the tournament’s 36-year history.

Their 22-15 loss to Fiji has left them at the point of no return and Mitchell, who won 71 caps and played in three World Cups, believes that head coach and former England boss Jones needs to provide some answers.

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“Let’s not take away from the fact that Fiji played really well. But let’s also not take away from the fact that we shouldn’t have lost to Fiji,” Mitchell told The Good, The Bad and The Rugby Australia podcast.

“Eddie sits there and goes, ‘yeah, it’s my fault. I take full responsibility’. What does that mean, though?

“Like, he doesn’t get dropped this week. He’s not not coaching next week. It’s just like an empty line in a press conference.

“You’ve made some glaring decisions around Quade (Cooper), around Michael Hooper. Captaincy, there are six captains in seven weeks.


“Explain some of these decisions to us, because as fans we are all sitting here scratching our heads.

“A lot of the time we can sit there and defend Eddie or the Wallabies because we can understand logic in some of these decisions.

“But there is none of it, and he is sat there and not actually giving any explanation as to why Quade is not there, why Michael Hooper is not there?

“Why have you not selected Michael Hooper? Quade Cooper? Come out and actually tell us as fans. Why have you not picked these guys? Because now we are seeing the result of you not picking some of these guys.”


Australia’s players, meanwhile, are continuing their preparations in Saint-Etienne for the Wales game.

And Wallabies scrum coach Neal Hatley told reporters: “I have worked with him (Eddie Jones) for five years, and he is sharp every day.

“He leaves no stone unturned. My first message came through at about 04.30 this morning. That is how he works.

“Eddie has had a much closer look at where he believes Australian rugby is and what it needs to move forwards. I’ve got a huge amount of faith in the plan he puts up.”



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