New Wallabies coach Eddie Jones vows Australia can win World Cup
The new coach, Eddie Jones, took over after one of the least successful international seasons in Wallabies history and declared that he was “not the messiah”, but set the lofty goal of winning this year’s World Cup in France.
Jones, who coached the Wallabies to the 2003 World Cup final, which they lost to England, before being sacked in 2005, is back in charge following the sacking of Dave Rennie after an underwhelming tenure.
The Wallabies won just five of 14 tests in 2022 under Rennie, who was contracted until the end of the World Cup tournament. But Rugby Australia officials moved quickly to catch Jones when he was moved in as England coach.
Two days after arriving from the UK, Jones said winning was the only way to revive rugby in Australia, and it started at the top.
He spoke of restoring “pride” after the Wallabies slipped to sixth in the world rankings, and winning the World Cup had to be the goal.
“What win World Cups and the hearts of people are teams that play with spirit,” he said on Tuesday.
“We want pride back in Australian rugby. That’s the most important thing.
The newly appointed Wallabies coach, Eddie Jones, has his sights set on the World Cup tournament. Photo: Matt King/Getty Images Source: Getty Images
“We have to win the World Cup. If we win, it changes things for rugby in Australia.
“There are about six teams separated by a cigarette paper. It’s so tight.
“We have a very talented group of young players and it is my job to connect them into a team that every Australian is proud of.
“While there is a lot of work to be done, I will make sure we turn over every rock to bring success to Australian rugby.”
Jones comes with high expectations for a second stint, having won the Six Nations three times with England and made it 18 consecutive victories during his successful tenure, which included several victories over the Wallabies.
Despite his success with England, and RA’s pursuit of him before signing him to a five-year deal, Jones said it would be a whole-of-rugby effort, from players to administrators and even fans, to take the Wallabies to the top of return the world. .
Jones said it was his mission to strengthen Australian rugby.
“I am not the messiah,” he said.
“Everybody’s in this together, but sometimes you just need someone to beat the drum.”
New Zealander Rennie, who took over from Michael Cheika at the end of 2019, was sacked after just five wins from 14 tests last year.
Jones coached the Wallabies to the 2003 World Cup final in Sydney, a game they lost to England in extra time.
Jones, a known hard taskmaster, was sacked by England in December last year.