Why Aussie scribe is 'quietly confident' Jones will return to Wallabies
The Rugby Football Union made a bold call earlier this week by axing super coach Eddie Jones nine months out from the World Cup, but England’s loss might end up being Australia’s gain.
England didn’t have a great year in 2022 under Eddie Jones – there’s no hiding from that – but Jones has already cemented his legacy as one of the greatest minds to have ever graced the international game.
Jones etched his name into rugby folklore almost eight years ago when he led Japan to a famous upset win over South Africa at the 2015 Rugby World Cup.
The 62-year-old has also been to World Cup finals with both Australia and England.
While Jones is certainly one of the greatest World Cup coaches in rugby history, clearly the RFU had had enough after an underwhelming campaign – which included just one win in November.
But if recent reports are to be believed, and the opinions of one of Australia’s top rugby journalists as well, then Jones could be set for a return to Australian shores.
As reported by The Sydney Morning Herald on Wednesday, Rugby Australia is interested in speaking with Jones who is now a free agent, although Dave Rennie will still be the head coach.
Speaking on Weekend Sport with Jason Pine, journalist Tom Decent explained why he “would be betting” on Jones returning to the Wallabies “at some point.”
“Whether it’s next year or at some point, I would be betting on that at some point. I think there’s a reasonable chance he would do that,” Decent said.
“He’s been linked with the USA, we know that they are keen for him to come on board… so that’s something that he’s definitely exploring.
“But we all know that Eddie at heart is an Australia, he loves Australian rugby. It would have to be on his terms and there would have to be a lot of things to go right for it to happen.
“But I would be quietly confident that at some point he’ll be back in Australian rugby in some capacity, whether that’s coach, technical director, not quite sure.”
The wounded Wallabies are in somewhat of a crisis of their own at the moment as well.
While Australia showed plenty of fight and potential during an injury-ravaged international campaign, the men in gold failed to win as many games as they would’ve liked.
And ultimately, rugby is a results drive business.
After starting their season with a win over Jones’ England, the Wallabies lost six of their next eight Test matches before flying to Europe.
Australia managed to win their opening Test in a thriller against Scotland, before losing their next three matches by three points or less – including a first ever loss to Italy.
But it’s understood that Rennie will continued to coach the Wallabies through to at least the World Cup.
“All indications are that he will. The Eddie Jones news has thrown a little bit of a spanner in the works in terms of Eddie just literally being a free agent as of right now,” Decent added.
“I would say almost certainly. Barring an absolutely big twist in the next few months, and someone being available and ready, I think they’re getting a little bit of the benefit of the doubt.
“Very hard to get a read on this Wallabies team but very, very confident that he’ll be the guy at the World Cup barring something in the next few weeks. We’ll see though.”
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Retallick and whitelock still good enough to take on the best but they have to produce the quality several games in a row. Who do the Kiwis have after they and Scott b? At least the front row will be okay. Back row interesting coz Sam came and Ardie look sorta essential but can it work? Works better with brodies work rate but still.. what do you think nick. Can they get away without the backup locks?Go to comments
He’s probably right. The Boks are going to play like the Boks and that’s hard to shake but on saying that the Boks were done in Brighton and pressured by Japan in Japan. Dunno what tongas got in the front row but their loosies will be powerful and their back three very dangerous. Maybe Adam coleman at lock and sekope kepu up front?Go to comments