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Former England head coach Eddie Jones took over from Dave Rennie as Australia head coach on a five-year contract in January, but a disappointing run of results and a first-ever pool-stage exit at the Rugby World Cup for the Wallabies has led to the 63-year-old resigning

Last Updated: 30/10/23 10:12pm

Australia head coach Eddie Jones has resigned

Rugby Australia has accepted the resignation of head coach Eddie Jones just 10 months into a five-year contract after the Wallabies’ pool-stage World Cup exit.

The former England head coach returned for a second spell in charge of his home nation in January this year, replacing Dave Rennie, and signed an A$4.5m (£2.35m) deal with Rugby Australia.

However, a winless Rugby Championship campaign followed by going out of this year’s World Cup in the pool stage for the first time and suffering a shock defeat to Fiji in the process has led to Jones departing the position, confirmed for November 25.

“Rugby Australia can confirm that it has accepted the resignation of Wallabies head coach Eddie Jones, and he will depart the position on 25 November 2023,” a statement from the governing body read.

“Rugby Australia thanks Eddie for his commitment to the Wallabies in 2023, and wishes him the best in his future endeavours.

“Announcements regarding the future of the Wallabies coaching staff will be made in due course.”

Rugby Australia chief executive Phil Waugh is set to hold a media conference on Tuesday to address the fall-out from Jones’ upcoming departure.

Australia lost 6-40 against Wales in a Rugby World Cup Pool C match

In an interview with The Australian newspaper, Jones said he had “no regrets” over his time in charge and that he hopes his tenure will be the “catalyst for change” for the country.

He added: “I feel disappointed about the World Cup. I feel disappointment about the fact that what we wanted to do in terms of changing the system hasn’t been able to happen in the short term. In the short and medium term, it really affects me personally. I have a major feeling of disappointment. But I don’t feel any grievance towards anyone.

“I’ve really enjoyed coaching the players. The players have been fantastic. They just need a better environment to be training and playing in.”

Jones also denied reports which emerged during the tournament in France over him speaking to the Japan Rugby Football Union prior to the World Cup about returning to coach the Brave Blossoms, with the 63-year-old insisting he was committed to the Australia job.

Jones, whose mother and wife are Japanese, has been linked with the Japan head coach job since Australian media reported he had interviewed for it a couple of days before the Wallabies’ final World Cup warm-up.

However, Jones still hopes to coach “one more international team, one more cycle” in the future, but says he doesn’t currently have a job to go to.

Australia’s Tom Hooper looks dejected after Wales beat the Wallabies 40-6

He is currently in the United Kingdom training the Barbarians with Scott Robertson ahead of their match against Wales on November 4.

Jones also mentioned he is looking forward to spending more time with his wife.

“I haven’t got any job offer. I’ve been living apart from my wife because she lives in Japan,” he said.

“I want to spend a bit of time with her. I want to stay married. I think at 63 I don’t want to get divorced. And then come December, I’ll start to have a look and see what I’d like to coach another international team, I like to coach one more team. One more cycle.”

Chairman of Rugby Australia Hamish McLennan had already vowed to continue in his role.

McLennan told the Sydney Morning Herald in a statement: “I came to rugby to find a way to fix it when it all fell over and despite the sad Eddie situation, this is another hurdle we’ll overcome.

“I want to stay to deliver the 2027 World Cup in Australia. That has always been the big prize for Australian rugby.

“More destabilisation will just make matters worse, just when we’re about to break through. Life is not a continuous line of perfect calls and success.”

Australia’s head coach Eddie Jones during their Rugby World Cup match against Georgia at the Stade de France

Jones was reappointed as Australia’s head coach in January 2023, a month after the Rugby Football Union had sacked him after seven years in the role for a poor run of results where England won just five of their 12 Tests in 2022.

Jones had led England to three Six Nations titles, including the Grand Slam in 2016 and the World Cup final in 2019.

The 63-year-old coached Australia between 2001 and 2005 in which he also led them to the 2003 World Cup final where they were beaten by England in Sydney.

The Wallabies won only two of their nine Tests this year, against Georgia and Portugal but then suffered back-to-back World Cup defeats to Fiji and Wales.

During Jones’ most recent stint as the Wallabies coach, Australia had a win rate of 12.5 per cent – the least successful in their history.

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