Former Ireland coach Joe Schmidt is set to be named as the new Wallabies boss to replace Eddie Jones with an announcement expected in coming days, Australian media reported Friday.
Jones acrimoniously quit in October after their calamitous World Cup campaign, just 10 months into a five-year contract, having won just two from nine Tests.
He has since been hired by Japan.
The Sydney Morning Herald and broadcaster Channel Nine, citing sources with knowledge of discussions, said New Zealander Schmidt was set to succeed him with “only the paperwork to be finalised” and an announcement “in coming days”.
Former Wallabies pivot Stephen Larkham and current Leicester coach Dan McKellar were among others said to be in the running, along with the vastly experienced Michael Cheika.
Rugby Australia did not immediately comment.
Last month, long-serving World Rugby administrator Peter Horne was appointed as RA’s new director of high-performance, with David Nucifora returning home from his role as high-performance director with Ireland to help.
Both men have strong relationships with 58-year-old Schmidt, who coached Ireland from 2013 to 2019 and was instrumental in helping them become the number one ranked team in the world.
More recently, he worked with the All Blacks at the last World Cup, where they finished runners-up to South Africa.
Australia have 18 months to prepare for a British and Irish Lions tour in 2025 and will host the men’s World Cup two years after that.
Wales are due to tour Australia in July.
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