Jones backs White for Oz job

2014-10-15 07:49
Eddie Jones (Gallo Images)
Cape Town - Japan coach Eddie Jones says former Springbok coach Jake White is the ideal candidate to take over as Wallabies mentor should Ewen McKenzie be sacked.

READ: Why Jake White left the Sharks

According to the Sydney Morning Herald website, speculation is growing that McKenzie could be fired within weeks.

This comes despite the Australian Rugby Union (ARU) chief executive Bill Pulver publicly backing McKenzie as the man to take the Wallabies to next year's World Cup in England and Wales.

McKenzie has been battling through off-field dramas for the past few weeks and there appears to be growing discontent among the players.

It is being reported that White's management has made contact with the ARU and there are claims ARU chairperson Michael Hawker sounded out the former Springbok mentor. The claims have been denied however.

And Jones, who was roped in by White as a technical assistant when the Springboks won the World Cup in 2007, says White could be a good short-term solution to Australia's woes.

The Wallabies take on the All Blacks in a Bledisloe Cup match in Brisbane this Saturday and Jones said that should they again perform badly, then Australia should replace McKenzie.

"If they (the Wallabies) play well on the weekend then (McKenzie) should go through to the World Cup," said Jones.

"But if the rabble continues, they've really got to look at getting someone in for a short period of time until the World Cup, and one of the blokes who could definitely do it would be Jake."

Getting White in should not be a long term approach, according to Jones, who feels Waratahs coach Michael Cheika should be groomed to take over after the World Cup.

It was reported in New Zealand media earlier this week that White would serve as technical advisor to Tonga when they play Georgia, the United States and Scotland next month.

The 51-year-old White recently quit his role as Director of Rugby at the Sharks after only a season in charge. White left the Sharks under a cloud of uncertainty, with some reports stating that he left because there was growing discord between himself and his backroom staff, as well as with the players.

White, who has on many occasions stated his desire to again coach at international level, was interviewed for the Wallabies job last year but the ARU instead opted for McKenzie.

Read more on:    wallabies  |  eddie jones  |  jake white  |  rugby

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