Eddie Jones says Jake White could take the Wallabies to next year's World Cup if the Australian Rugby Union decides to sack Ewen McKenzie.
McKenzie has been battling through off-field dramas for the past two weeks, and there is growing discontent among players.
The Canberra Times understands White's management has made contact with the ARU and there are claims ARU chairman Michael Hawker sounded out the former Bok coach, who recently left the Sharks after just one season as director of rugby.
Jones, who coached the Wallabies to the final of the 2003 World Cup and was a technical advisor for the World Cup-winning Springboks in 2007, says McKenzie should be fired if the Wallabies produce another poor performance in the third Bledisloe Cup match in Brisbane on Saturday.
'If they play well on the weekend then [McKenzie] should go through to the World Cup,' Jones said. '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.
'It's not a long-term approach, but it could work and then groom [Super Rugby-winning Waratahs coach] Michael Cheika to take over after that.'
However, the ARU has rejected reports it is preparing to replace McKenzie as Wallabies coach.
'Ewen is coaching the team [against the All Blacks] this weekend and next Friday he will board the plane with the team for the November Tests tour [to Britain] and is contracted to Australian rugby to lead the Wallabies to next year's World Cup,' said CEO Bill Pulver.
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