Rugby Australia chief Hamish McLennan says the Wallabies’ World Cup woes are owed to a “broken system” and not head coach Eddie Jones.
Jones has come under fire as the Wallabies appear set for a pool stage exit from the World Cup, following losses to Wales and Fiji.
Since replacing Dave Rennie, after the New Zealander was stood down following a poor finish to 2022, Jones saw the Wallabies go on a five-game losing streak before the World Cup.
There have also been reports in the Australian media that Jones held an online interview with the Japan Rugby Union before the World Cup, to return as the country’s head coach, something he has vehemently denied.
This has only fueled calls for Jones to be removed from his position, fewer than 12 months into his long-term contract that runs until 2027.
However, in an interview with Telegraph Sport, Rugby Australia chairman McLennan publicly supported the Wallabies head coach, blaming a “broken system” instead.
“Whatever you think of Eddie, his achievements as head coach are pretty incredible – playing a major part in getting three separate teams to three World Cup finals,” McLennan said.
“So the question has to be: ‘Is Eddie a bad coach or is the Australian federated model broken?’
“I can wholeheartedly tell you that the system is broken, and I have been saying that for three years.”
The Wallabies face minnows Portugal on Sunday evening, with their playoff hopes hanging by a thread after Fiji came from behind to beat Georgia on Saturday.
Photo: William West/AFP