England rugby union have parted company with Eddie Jones.
They released the following statement:
“Following a review of the Autumn, Eddie Jones has been dismissed from the position of England Men’s Head Coach.
“The Rugby Football Union (RFU) will now conclude the long-term work it has been undertaking on coach succession planning with changes set to be announced in the near future. In the interim,” Richard Cockerill will take over the day to day running of the men’s performance team.
“It is important to recognise the huge contribution Eddie has made to English rugby, winning three Six Nations Championships, one Grand Slam and taking us to a Rugby World Cup Final,” said RFU CEO, Bill Sweeney.
“He has the highest win ratio of any previous England head coach and has helped develop the leadership skills of many players and coaches. I am grateful to Eddie for all he has done for England across many areas of the game and the professional way in which he has approached reviewing the performance of the team. He has provided the panel with astute insight and meaningful lessons that will support the team performance going forward.”
“I am pleased with much that we have achieved as an England team and I look forward to watching the team’s performance in the future,” said Jones. “Many of the players and I will no doubt keep in touch and I wish them all well in their future careers.”
The decision for Eddie to leave was taken by the RFU board earlier today. Speaking about the decision, RFU Chair, Tom Ilube said: “The independent review panel regularly updates board on its discussions and findings. We are fully supportive of its process and recommendations.”
Jones has been linked with a move to the NRL in the past and this news makes that possibility all the more likely.
Meanwhile, it has been suggested that Leeds Rhinos legend Kevin Sinfield and his boss Steve Bothwick at Leicester Tigers could replace Jones with Sinfield set to take over as Defence Coach according to the Mail Online.
What this would mean for former Hull FC coach Brett Hodgson who holds the position remains unclear.