George Gregan expects Eddie Jones to get England back on track sooner rather than later and believes his former coach will be relishing the challenge.
After winning 24 of their first 25 Tests under Jones, claiming two Six Nations titles, one Grand Slam success and a 3-0 series victory on Australian soil in the process, England endured a dramatic slump in form as they lost three matches in succession to finish fifth in the 2018 Six Nations.
Yet ex-Australia skipper Gregan, who worked under Jones at international and club level during his illustrious career, is not anticipating England’s woes to continue for much longer.
“He’ll react like he always does. He likes a challenge, Eddie, and he’ll be looking to get better – win, lose or draw,” HSBC ambassador Gregan told Omnisport.
“They’ll get to the bottom of it. He’ll identify things that need fixing and they’ll get on to it. They’ll be on to it already.
“He’ll enjoy this experience. You can’t keep winning. What are they, 24 [wins] from 28? And that’s a team that got bundled out of the  World Cup before the play-offs, so he’s done a pretty good job from that perspective.
“Yes, they’ve lost three in a row and no one likes to lose three in a row, but it just shows you the margins are very small in international rugby. They were probably on the positive side of some tight matches in the last couple of years.”
— World Rugby (@WorldRugby) March 17, 2018
England will bid to bounce back from their miserable Six Nations during a June series in South Africa.
“There’s always learning in any sport and Eddie’s a very quick learner. I’m sure they’re keen to get back to winning ways and there’s no better way than to get back on the horse and take on a challenge like that in South Africa,” Gregan added.
“That’s the sort of attitude Eddie will have and I’m sure the playing group will respond positively.”
Gregan was speaking at the Hong Kong Sevens and believes rugby’s shortest format will continue to grow in the coming years.
— George Gregan (@GeorgeGregan) January 28, 2018
“There are a lot of countries that use it to blood players [for the 15-a-side game],” he continued. “I know New Zealand have used it a lot, with the likes of Jonah Lomu, Christian Cullen, Rieko and Akira Ioane, Liam Messam, Ben Smith.
“They all started playing Sevens and went into 15-a-side careers, but the way Sevens is growing internationally and its introduction to the Olympics – I think it’s becoming more and more popular on an international scale. There could be a real career for people just staying in Sevens.”
As a long-term supporter of Rugby Sevens, HSBC is committed to working alongside partner World Rugby to achieve their shared goal of growing the sport worldwide. The creation of the film ‘The Mind’ starring George Gregan is part of HSBC’s focus on reaching new fans all over the world by highlighting the incredible athletes and stories only found in this unique sport. You can view the film across HSBC Sport social media channels.
Watch episode one of the Rugby Explorer below
Ex-Scotland international, Jim Hamilton, travels to Singapore to explore the city and find out more about the rugby scene in the Southeast Asian country. He meets up with the national team captain and several local players.
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