Cheika gets surprise backing
NEWS: England coach Eddie Jones backed his Wallabies counterpart Michael Cheika to “rise again” on Thursday after masterminding the World Cup quarter-final defeat that brought his five-year tenure to a close.
Cheika has faced criticism in Australia since Saturday’s 16-40 loss to England, which prompted him to announce his departure from the role.
But Jones, whose long association with Cheika dates back to their time at Sydney’s Randwick club, said he had “put some pride back in to Australian rugby”, especially after taking the Wallabies to the 2015 World Cup final.
“It’s never pleasant when you lose your job – it’s tough, there are various comments made, I do feel for him personally,” Jones said.
“He’s put some pride back into Australia rugby. We all make mistakes and do silly things, he’s just human. He’s given that job all he can and he got Australia out of a difficult situation and got them to a World Cup final in 2015 and I’m sure he will rise again as a coach.”
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Jones also sidestepped questions about whether he would consider a return to the Wallabies, after taking them to the 2003 World Cup final – where they lost to England.
“Don’t think that’s really a question for today – I’m only really worried about a pretty important game,” said Jones, whose England team play New Zealand in the semi-finals on Saturday.
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