Eddie to pinch Super coaches for World Cup heist?
SPOTLIGHT: Eddie Jones says he will consider pinching Australia’s Super Rugby Pacific coaches to form part of a Wallabies set-up intent on pulling off the heist of winning the Rugby World Cup.
Since returning to the helm of Australia last month, the make-up of Jones’s backroom staff has been a hot topic.
Jones has a reputation for pushing his assistants to the limit and he has yet to make a call on the futures of Dan McKellar and Laurie Fisher, who remain from Dave Rennie’s regime.
Attack coach Scott Wisemantel, who previously worked with Jones with England, quit before Rennie was axed while former Wests Tigers coach Michael Maguire has said he has unfinished business in the NRL.
Jones said he had contemplated picking the best brains out of the five Super Rugby sides to formulate his Wallabies support staff.
“We’ve got a bit of a smash and grab job, it’s nine and a half months and [it’s like] there’s a beautiful jewellery store around the corner,” Jones said.
“You’ve got to get four or five coaches that can work together to get in there, steal the trophy and get out without getting caught.
“In a lot of ways, we’ve got time because as a coaching team, we need to be together probably for the last six or eight weeks of Super Rugby, where selection is going to become important.”
Returning to the role in January, Jones said he planned to have face-to-face talks with every coach of an Australian franchise in the coming months.
The 63-year-old said he wouldn’t be dictating tactics to the Super Rugby sides but would offer input into where he thought potential Wallabies would be best suited.
“We don’t tell the Super teams how to play,” he said ahead of next Friday’s opener between the Waratahs and Brumbies.
“We’re not New Zealand or Ireland – we’re Australia.
“We have a relationship with the Super Rugby coaches but I want them to play the style they want to play.
“What I want to see is that the players play with that toughness that want to get better, they want to help their teammates in difficult situations.”
Jones reiterated how critical Super Rugby games were to steel Australia’s players for the pressure of Test rugby.
“The games against the Crusaders or whoever the strongest New Zealand side is, they are the important selection games,” Jones said.
“That’s where you’ll see [what you want] from the players.
“The expectation is they play well and consistently play well.
“It’d be nice to have an Australian side win the Super Rugby final.”