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Jones says ‘difficult’ to coach another team at World Cup

Sacked England coach Eddie Jones said on Friday the last three years had taken a toll and it would be “difficult” to bounce back and coach another team at next year’s World Cup.

The Australian, who had been in charge since 2015, was axed by the Rugby Football Union this month after a poor 2022 which saw England win just five of their 12 matches.

He is reportedly being courted by several Test nations, including the United States, Japan and Georgia, and has been linked with a return home to coach the Wallabies.

But the 62-year-old told the Sydney Morning Herald he would not rush into a decision on what to do next and said it was unlikely he would coach another side at the World Cup in France.

“Coaching at the next World Cup will be difficult,” he said. 

“It probably has struck me that the last three years has taken a fair bit out of me.

“It was pretty all encompassing the last three years, so I think I’ll take a bit of a breath now. 

“If someone comes forward and the offer’s too good to refuse then I’ll look at it, but I think it’s getting too close to the starting point of the World Cup, so I’m not too bothered one way or another.”

Jones took England to the final of the 2019 World Cup, where they lost to South Africa, and had always targeted success in France next year. 

Earlier this month, Rugby Australia chairman Hamish McLennan and Jones reportedly had phone talks with the governing body keen to entice him home.

Current Wallabies coach Dave Rennie is under increasing pressure after a poor year and with a British and Irish Lions tour in 2025 and a home World Cup two years later, Jones has been flagged as a potential replacement.

Jones told the newspaper he was interested in “anything where I can add value”.

“That would be my starting point: whether I can add value and whether they can win. They’re the two things I’m looking at,” he said.

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