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England rugby coach Eddie Jones covets South Sydney NRL coaching job

England rugby union coach Eddie Jones says his dream job would be to coach the South Sydney Rabbitohs but admits he has little chance of getting a gig in the NRL.

Jones remained in Australia after leading the tourists to a 2-1 series win over the Wallabies, spending time at Melbourne Storm, Melbourne AFL club and the Penrith Panthers, where he discussed his interest in league.

“I like the game,” Jones said during his visit to Penrith.

“If there was an opportunity there (in the NRL) I would jump at it, but the reality is it’s probably not going to be there.”

Asked about the Rabbitohs, Jones responded: “That would be the dream team. That would be the dream.

“From the age of five, I’ve supported Souths. That would be fantastic (to coach the Rabbitohs).”

If he was offered the job he would grab the chance “100 per cent, yeah.” The incumbent coach is Jason Demetriou.

Jones has been linked to a potential return to Australian rugby after next year’s World Cup, when his contract expires with England. He has been busy fact finding since England’s series victory.

The Roar experts Brett McKay, Harry Jones and Geoff Parkes talk TRC on this week’s edition of The Roar Rugby Podcast

“I wanted to come out to Penrith to see what they’re doing well and what we can learn from,” said Jones.

“The principles of coaching never change. Obviously, the game is different, but it’s learning about the principles.
“You can always learn a different way and a better way of doing things. That’s why we’re out here.”

After the third Test Jones caught up with Storm coach Craig Bellamy, who has spent time with Jones in the England set up.

“Melbourne Storm are the toughest team I’ve seen, so we can always learn from them,” Jones said.

“So it’s great for us that we can spend the week down there and really try to improve our coaching because we want to get better as coaches.

“We’re asking players to always get better so we need to be role models so we’ll have a good week down there.”

Hansen’s attack on NZR

World Cup winning coach Steve Hansen has clearly had enough with the state of play in Kiwiland, accusing New Zealand Rugby of allowing relations with players to hit an all time low.

Hansen responded to weeks of criticism of the players and coach Ian Foster during a NZ radio interview on Thursday.

“They’ve come out and aired all their dirty washing in the front part of the property rather than out the back,” Hansen said of recent reviews into Foster and former Black Ferns coach Glenn Moore.

“So their job is to run it with strength and leadership but in a way that you’re going to look after the people that work for you.

“Otherwise, you’ll end up with a high turnover of staff which I think that they’re having at the moment.

“The relationship between the board and the exec and players at the moment is probably the worst it’s ever been.”

Hansen said the relationship has been fraying for several years.

“The way they handled the new money scheme….[former chairman] Brent Impey came out and just absolutely roasted the players with no consultation,” Hansen said, referring to the decision to bring PE firm Silver Lake on board.

”I don’t think they’re doing their job right at the moment. You’ve got a group of eight All Blacks captains coming out and forming a group and went and spoke to them, and ‘Kirky’ [David Kirk] is in the paper the other day saying they don’t felt they got listened to.

”So let’s start there and let’s get that right. If you look back to when we were really successful from about 2010 through to 2019, which was our most successful era, the board and the exec at the rugby union were humming.

”There was complete togetherness and connection was with the actual All Blacks team.”

TRC persists with 20 minute red

SANZAAR has confirmed it will be continuing with the 20-minute red card during The Rugby Championship, despite obvious opposition to it from World Rugby.

The recent north vs. south series were played under the laws that a red card meant a team lost a player for the duration of the match – as happened with Darcy Swain in Perth.

But SANZAAR said it would continue the law trial conducted throughout Super Rugby competitions in 2020, 2021 and 2022 as well as The Rugby Championship in 2021. 

SANZAAR CEO Brendan Morris said in a statement: “This is a great decision for The Rugby Championship and follows on from its application in Super Rugby. All the SANZAAR national unions – Argentina, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa –  are fully behind the extension of the red-card law trail. As a group we firmly believe the integrity of international matches is very important and that wherever possible matches must be a contest of fifteen versus fifteen.”

“Within the context of the games’ laws, SANZAAR believes that a 20-minute Red Card allows for a significant deterrent to deliberate acts of foul play, while it also protects the contest of fifteen on fifteen, which is what our unions, broadcasters and fans are telling us is important.”

“SANZAAR stands alongside World Rugby’s important work on managing foul play and player welfare and will conduct a formal research project across the 2022 TRC period with all comparative findings to be shared with World Rugby at the end of the season. The aim is to gather the necessary information that allows the 20-minute red card trial to be accepted into the full laws of the game in the future.”

Foketi praise for Aus A impact

Waratahs centre Lalakai Foketi has praised the impact of the Australia A tour after winning a recall to the Wallabies squad ahead of the Rugby Championship.

Foketi is in line for a return to the Test arena due to the absence of Samu Kerevi at the Commonwealth Games. Kerevi will miss the opening two matches of the series, in Argentina later this month.

Foketi was impressive during Australia A’s three game run in the Pacific Nations Cup in Fiji earlier this month and says it’s helped prepare him to step up if required.

“You look at the teams we played – Fiji, Tonga and Samoa, especially that Fiji side – it is a huge step up from going back to play club footy, so if you’re going from that competition into the Argentina series and The Rugby Championship, I think you’d take a lot of confidence out of that,” Foketi told reporters.

: Lalakai Foketi poses during the Australian Wallabies player portrait session at Event Cinemas Coomera on June 23, 2021 in Gold Coast, Australia. (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images for Rugby Australia)

(Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images for Rugby Australia)

“I definitely did, playing against those sides. It is a big step. I think I would be ready.

“Going into the Aus A campaign, I didn’t know what to expect. But as soon as we got over there, it is the same environment as here. You are basically playing for Australia. The competition was massive. It is a great set-up and a great competition, and Aus A should continue.“

Manly’s ‘punch in the face’

Rugby sevens star Sharni Williams has described the news that Manly players have boycotted a game over the club’s decision to wear pride jerseys as a “punch in the face”.

Williams, who wore rainbow headgear at the Tokyo Olympics, told the Sydney Morning Herald, that she felt duty bound to make a comment on the Manly situation.

“It’s obviously a tough position for me to be in,” Williams said. “I am visible and I have a responsibility, but at the same time I have a job here to be at the Commonwealth Games, to be alongside my teammates.

“It’s a bit of a punch in the face but I also expect it. We’ve been working at it for so long. I respect those haters and I understand it but at the same time I respect my views and I stand there by the people to know there are other people out there for them.

“The rainbow headgear is really important to me. It’s that visibility piece for myself and for my community. It’s finally being comfortable with myself, [which] is huge. Me being able to share my story helps others be able to figure out who they are and what stories they have.

“It’s the communication and education piece. If you communicate early about wearing it, everything can be sorted.

“If one of the girls [in my team] didn’t want to wear it, I’d be like, ‘Well, I understand that’s your view and your opinion but it hurts’.”

Williams said she wanted to add some context to her views.

“Growing up in a country town feeling isolated, feeling like I didn’t belong, getting told some disgusting things by men, people outing me before I was even comfortable with being who I am … I’ve had a pretty tough upbringing,” she said. “But I’m proud of who I am now.

“I always thought I had to marry a man. I thought I had to walk down the aisle to a man but as soon as I figured out that didn’t have to happen, as soon as the yes vote happened, it was like, ‘Ahhh, there is some relief’. I can now start to be who I want to be.

“We need people to be out there and be our allies and stand up for us. Love is love and that’s the most powerful thing on earth. We’re not on earth very long, so if you’re fighting angst and disappointment and not knowing who you are, you can’t be better for anyone else around you or the world.”

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