– The successful practitioner becomes the bogeyman of the nation
The proud Wallabies are in danger of their first preliminary round exit at the Rugby World Cup. It causes restlessness. In the eye of the hurricane: Coach Eddie Jones.
Of course this is a serious matter. Definitely not the place for comedy, anyway. Still, Eddie Jones doesn’t want to be banned from at least a little gallows humor. “I came to help, but I’m not much help this time, am I?” He laughed.
The 63-year-old coach of the Australian national team said this after their group game against Wales in the third round of the Rugby World Cup in France. The game turned out to be a disaster for the proud Wallabies, who lost 6:40 to their opponents – the worst defeat in their World Cup history. Result: For the first time, they may lose in the opening round. They depend on a slip-up from Fiji, who face mandatory assignments with Georgia and Portugal.
Speaking of Fiji: another blip in the Australians’ books. They met in Saint-Etienne a week before the disastrous defeat against Wales Lost in spectacular fashion to the underdogs from the Pacific Islands. Jones tried to calm the tide, and he immediately came up with a saying: “I deserve baguettes and croissants thrown at me.”
But Jones is hard to stop, as was evident after two embarrassing performances by his young team in the final in France. All his infamy is of no use to him. “I take full responsibility,” he said a little more seriously after the room against Wales, which will mean he will lose the job he only took up at the start of the year after the final.
He coached twice in World Cup finals
The man from Tasmania has earned a reputation and success. He had already been Australia’s national coach since 2001 and led the team to the finals of the 2003 World Cup (loss against England). In 2007, he served as the sporting director of the South African national team during the Springboks’ second World Cup title.
In 2012 he went to support Japan and pulled off one of the biggest surprises in rugby with the Cherry Blossoms at the 2015 World Cup: they beat South Africa in a thrilling match in the group stage. His last engagement before returning to Australia ended with a (lost) World Cup final: England v South Africa in 2019.
With an inexperienced and injury-plagued Australian team, good advice now seems expensive. The Wallabies’ monumental weakness comes at the worst possible time when Australia will host the next World Cup in 2027. Jones is under contract until then. “I’m a proud Australian and it pains me to explain defeats like this,” he said after the game against Wales in Lyon.
What is happening in Japan?
Fewer and fewer comrades in his homeland are able to bear his inner pain. A few hours before last Sunday’s Wales game, a report appeared in the Sydney Morning Herald that Jones had re-applied for the Japan national coach position. He reportedly took part in a Zoom meeting ahead of the World Cup and another job interview is already scheduled.
Jones was asked about the media conference report and discussions after the Wales game. “I don’t know what you’re talkin’ about, man,” he repeated when asked. He then interrupted player David Borecki with a similar question. “What you’re doing here is disgraceful. I apologize for the results, I truly do. But denying my commitment to work is too much. I work non-stop.”
Experts stick to their presentation in the “Sydney Morning Herald”; The arguments are apparently supported by many sources. In a comment section, a rugby reporter writes: “How could I have said anything wrong about him? Jones had to go, but his fate was sealed even before these embarrassing defeats.”
David Wiederker Thamedia is the Vice President of Sports and has been writing about sports since 2000. Her areas of expertise are soccer, artistic gymnastics and American sports.More info