Former England captain Chris Robshaw believes that Eddie Jones will be determined to avenge his sacking by the RFU and predicts the Wallabies will benefit hugely.
Jones took over the reins at the Wallabies a month after being dismissed by England, and Robshaw believes Australia will profit from an immediate uplift.
England and Australia are on course to clash in the quarter-finals at the World Cup in October, with Jones plotting against the side he was contracted to lead at France 2023.
“Eddie will have a big impact”
“We’ve seen Eddie’s comments that Australia might see England in the quarter-finals – and give a little smirk! You always want to get one over your former team,” Robshaw said.
“I’m pretty sure Eddie will have a big impact. When any good coach goes into a different set-up, it’s bad news if it’s not your team. Warren Gatland going back to Wales makes them tougher opposition straight away.
“When teams aren’t in form, and they get a coach of excellent quality, then, of course, it makes them tougher opposition.
“When Eddie was in charge, and England played Australia, we always knew it was a big game because of his history with Australia.
“But there was also the insight he had on the Australian players, the way they do things, their culture. Now he’s got that first hand from an England point of view.”
Jones’ final year in charge of England saw the side win five of their 12 Tests, but his early days were a stunning success. He delivered a Grand Slam and series whitewash of Australia as part of a record-equalling 18-Test run.
Robshaw was among those to benefit from Jones’ ability to push the right buttons and transform England’s fortunes.
“It’s Eddie mentality. He was better than any coach I have worked in terms of his man management,” he said.
“And it wasn’t always the big things; it was the little things like interacting with everyone every single morning in the breakfast room – going around all the tables.
“He would treat all the players differently. With someone like myself, he was always very honest; with someone like James Haskell, they would always take the mick out of each other. He interacted with the person rather than just the rugby player.
“For Australia, he will definitely have that ability to shake them up because they have good players, but they are just low in confidence.
“They had a tough autumn series over here. The writing has been on the wall that, at some point, he would go back to that Australia job.
“He’s a proud Australian; he’s got a lot of history and heritage there. It’s just happened a bit sooner than most had thought.”
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