Rugby Australia accepts Eddie Jones’ resignation as head coach

Rugby Australia has accepted the resignation of head coach Eddie Jones following the Wallabies’ failure to reach the knockout stages of the World Cup.

Jones will officially depart the position on November 25.

The former England coach’s departure just nine months into a five-year contract had been widely reported in Australia amid further speculation he is heading for a second spell in charge of Japan.

“Rugby Australia can confirm that it has accepted the resignation of Wallabies head coach Eddie Jones, and he will depart the position on 25 November 2023,” a statement from the governing body read.

“Rugby Australia thanks Eddie for his commitment to the Wallabies in 2023, and wishes him the best in his future endeavours.

“Announcements regarding the future of the Wallabies coaching staff will be made in due course.”

Rugby Australia chief executive Phil Waugh is set to hold a media conference on Tuesday to address the fall-out from Jones’ upcoming departure.

Chairman of Rugby Australia Hamish McLennan had already vowed to continue in his role.

McLennan told the Sydney Morning Herald in a statement: “I came to rugby to find a way to fix it when it all fell over and despite the sad Eddie situation, this is another hurdle we’ll overcome.

Wales v Australia – Rugby World Cup 2023 – Pool C – OL Stadium
Australia’s Samu Kerevi looks dejected following defeat in the Rugby World Cup match against Wales (PA)

“I want to stay to deliver the 2027 World Cup in Australia. That has always been the big prize for Australian rugby.

“More destabilisation will just make matters worse, just when we’re about to break through. Life is not a continuous line of perfect calls and success.”

McLennan played a key role in bringing Jones back for a second stint in charge of Australia, the 63-year-old replacing Dave Rennie just a month after being sacked by England following five wins in 12 Tests in 2022.

But his return turned sour with just two wins in nine Tests – against Georgia and Portugal in the World Cup where they suffered losses to Fiji and Wales.

Australia head coach Eddie Jones
Eddie Jones is set to official leave his role with Australia at the end of November (Adam Davy/PA)

The failure to get out of the group stages for the first time came against a background of Jones denying he took part in an interview with the Japanese Rugby Football Union, both during and after the World Cup.

Despite multiple news outlets reporting that he was poised to meet officials in Japan next month for a second interview, Jones has repeatedly told the media that he was committed to Australian rugby.

Jones told the Sydney Morning Herald on Sunday: “(I) gave it a run. Hopefully be the catalyst for change.

“Sometimes you have to eat s**t for others to eat caviar further down the track.”