Rassie Erasmus is reportedly a top target to replace Eddie Jones if the embattled England coach is relieved of his duties.
Jones is under fire after England, runners-up at the 2019 Rugby World Cup, won two of five matches to finish fifth in the 2021 Six Nations. His role in England’s record defeat by Wales and first home loss to Scotland in almost 40 years will be a focal point of the Rugby Football Union’s current campaign review.
Valid or not, the uncertainty around Jones’ future has given rise to speculation about his possible replacement, with former England coach Clive Woodward endorsing Crusaders frontman Scott Robertson for the job.
According to a report in The Rugby Paper, Erasmus has been approached to gauge his potential interest in the job, as has Warren Gatland, the man who will guide the British & Irish Lions on a tour of South Africa later this year.
Erasmus was linked with the same job in February last year, and he wasted little time in rubbishing the reports.
Squaring up against the British & Irish Lions is an item on the bucket list of most coaches, but then so is heading up the game’s richest union. The difference is that, in 2020, Erasmus would have had to surrender the chance to take on Gatland’s tourists; one year later, the offer would come at no such opportunity cost.