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Steve Hansen on what 'probably' cost Eddie Jones his job

By AAP
Is Eddie Jones pointing at Steve Hansen? Or the Big Bad Wolf?

All Blacks coaching great Steve Hansen believes Eddie Jones’s big focus on next year’s Rugby World Cup probably cost him his England job.

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Hansen has been appointed to guide a World XV against a Barbarians team coached by Jones at Twickenham in May.

The 2015 World Cup winner admitted he was taken aback at the timing of the England decision to axe their Australian coach.

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“It was pretty surprising that they would replace him now, when all along Eddie’s been saying ‘look, this is what we’re building for’,” Hansen said.

“He’s been their most successful coach in history. Some might say that Clive (Woodward) is because he won a World Cup. However, the record speaks for itself, doesn’t it?

“I know Eddie had a big focus on the World Cup and that’s probably what in the end cost him, because he didn’t have such a good autumn and people were frustrated by that.”

Jones can boast a 73 per cent winning record with England over his seven years in charge from 2015, and he took them to the last World Cup final in Japan with a masterpiece semi-final victory over the All Blacks.

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But he was sacked on December 6 following a disappointing autumn internationals campaign having finished third in the Six Nations with a 2-3 record early in the year.

Rugby Australia has sounded out former Wallabies coach Jones about a possible return home, while other nations have also expressed interest in his services.

“You relish every chance to go against Eddie,” said Hansen. “We’ve known each other for a long, long time and he’s a good rugby man.

“With Eddie, you’ve got to expect the unexpected, because one of his great attributes is his ability to analyse the opposition and set traps for them.

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“He’s a great planner, that’s why he’s been so successful with so many sides in different World Cups, having won one with South Africa (as advisor).”

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Shaylen 4 hours ago
Ireland and South Africa share the same player development dilemma

These guys will be utility players Nick it cannot be helped because coaches cannot help themselves. Rassie looks at players like these and sees the ability to cover multiple positions without losing much. It allows the 6-2 or 7-1. He wont change his coaching style or strategy for one player. At provincial level players like these are indispensable. If there is an injury to your starting 12 but your back up 12 is a bit iffy then a coach is going to go with the back up 10 who is gold and who can play a good 12. Damian Willemse for the Springboks is an obvious case, for the Stormers its the same. Dobson plays him at 12 or 15, with Gelant in the team he plays 12 but if Gelant goes down he doesnt go for his back up 15, he just puts Willemse there. With Frawley its the same at international and provincial level. He just slots in wherever. Frans Steyn made a career out of it. He was much maligned though as a youngster as he never fully developed into any role. He then went to Japan and France to decide for himself what kind of player he was, put on muscle and retained his big boot, ran over players and booted the ball long and came back into the Springboks after about 3 years away and was then certain about how he wanted to play the game no matter what position. Coaches cannot help themselves because they only want what is best for their teams and that means putting your most talented players on even if it means you cause them some discomfort. Sometimes players need to decide how they want to play the game and then adapt that to every position and let the coach decide how they want to use them.

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J
Jon 10 hours ago
Ireland and South Africa share the same player development dilemma

I think the main problem here is the structure of both countries make up. They are going to have very similar.. obstacles(not problems). It will just be part of the evolution of their rugby and they’ll need to find a way to make this versatility more advantageous than specialization. I think South Africa are well on the way to that end already, but Ireland are more likely to have a hierarchical approach and move players around the provinces. Ioane is going to be more than good enough to lock up one of those available positions for more than a few years I believe though. Morgan would definitely be a more long term outlook. Sacha to me has the natural footwork of a second five. Not everything is about winning, if a team has 3 players that want to play 10s just give them all a good go even if its to the detriment of everyone, this is also about dreams of the players, not just the fans. This is exactly how it would be in an amateur club setting. Ultimately some players just aren’t suited to any one position. The example was of a guy that had size and speed, enough pace to burn, power to drive, and speed to kick and pass long, but just not much else when it came to actual rugby (that matched it). New Zealand has it’s own example with Jordie Barrett and probably shows what Reece Hodge could have been if the game in Australia had any administration. Despite the bigger abundance of talent in NZ, Jordie was provided with consistent time as a fullback, before being ushered in as a second five. Possibly this was due to his blood, and another might not have been as fortunate, but it is what it was, a complete contrast to how Hodge was used in Australia, were he could have had any position he wanted. When it comes down to it though, much like these young fellas, it will be about what they want, and I think you’ll find they’ll be like Hodge and just want to be as valuable to the team as they can and play wherever. It’s not like 63 International Cap is a hard thing to live with as a result of that decision!

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