If there was potentially one name in both rugby league and union that is heralded it is that of Eddie Jones.
Although yet to coach in rugby league, Jones has never shied away from supporting his boyhood club, the South Sydney Rabbitohs and, with his lucrative contract with England rugby union ending at the end of 2023, there has been no shortage of suitors for the Australian’s contract.
Though enamoured with rugby union, Jones is still a huge fan of the 13-a-side game and he was in Perth to watch State of Origin game two, whilst Penrith’s premiership-winning coach Ivan Cleary met up with Jones at his England camp to see how he worked.
Jones’ final professional goal is said to be moving to league and he wants that club to be Souths.
Souths at present are in something of a rebuild under Jason Demetriou with results picking up in recent weeks, sitting sixth after four wins in their last five games.
Some of Jones’ achievements are unrivalled in the 15-man-code. The Aussie previously coached his national side between 2001 and 2005, taking the team to the 2003 Rugby World Cup Final, before becoming an assistant coach for South Africa when the Springboks won the 2007 Rugby World Cup.
From 2012 to 2015 he coached Japan, leading them in the 2015 Rugby World Cup and their upset win over South Africa.
In November 2015, Jones was appointed as head coach for England where he has been head coach ever since, winning the 2016 and 2017 Six Nations, becoming only the second international rugby team to go the entire calendar year unbeaten. Of course, Jones’ biggest achievement is leading England to the 2019 Rugby World Cup final where they were beaten by South Africa.
If Jones does make the move to rugby league, it would be one of the biggest moves in the history of both codes.