Wallabies great Stephen Moore has described the appointment of Eddie Jones as “panicked” and criticised the state of the game in Australia.
Jones will take charge of the Wallabies for a second time, having first acted as Australia coach from 2001 to 2005, during which time he led his country to a Rugby World Cup final.
The news came as a surprise, as there had been little indication that Dave Rennie would be sacked as head coach, but Jones’ removal from his job with England prompted Rugby Australia to act.
Moore, who won 129 caps for the Wallabies, is unconvinced by the move to bring Jones back as he told Code Sports of his frustration with how the game is being run in Australia.
Stephen Moore on Eddie Jones’ return to Australia.
“Australian rugby has drifted from one level of mediocrity to the next over the last couple of decades,” Moore said.
“It’s disappointing. I’m really disillusioned with the game, which is a shame, and a lot of my mates who l played rugby with are in the same boat.
“[Hiring Jones] is almost a panicked decision because Eddie got sacked by England and they had to move quickly.
“We haven’t grown our own coaches like we should’ve and now it’s biting us. Whenever the Wallabies job comes up, we’re scratching our heads about who could fill that role.”
— Wallabies (@wallabies) January 17, 2023
A bright future ahead for Australian rugby?
While Moore is disillusioned with Australian rugby, the next five years could prove to be a great success for the game Down Under.
Jones often gives teams a significant boost when he first takes over, while Australia find themselves on the kinder side of the draw at this year’s Rugby World Cup.
Australia is hosting the British and Irish Lions in 2025, as well as the World Cup in 2027, and success in those two major events on home soil would surely set the Wallabies up nicely for years to come.