Eddie Jones

Ex-Australia coach, Eddie Jones. Image by FRANCIS BOMPARD / AFP

Eddie Jones’s World Cup bill: R62.2 million!

Eddie Jones’s time with Australia ends in controversy as Rugby Australia uncovers millions in unapproved World Cup expenses.

Eddie Jones

Ex-Australia coach, Eddie Jones. Image by FRANCIS BOMPARD / AFP

The fallout from Eddie Jones’s disastrous stint as Australia’s head rugby coach continues. Rugby Australia (RA) has revealed millions in unapproved spending related to the team’s failed 2023 World Cup campaign.

Eddie Jones: Costly Tenure

Rugby Australia CEO Phil Waugh has criticized the “unacceptable” expenses incurred during Jones’s time in charge. An eye-watering £2.1 million (R62.2 million) in unauthorized costs directly linked to the tournament were found hidden in RA accounts.

Jones’s reign ended in disgrace as Australia suffered its first-ever World Cup group-stage exit. He has since returned to coach Japan.

Where Did the Money Go?

“The over-investment that was unapproved was £2.1 million, which covered three main elements, being team costs, staff travel and then player benefits,” said Waugh. “A lot of that came through post-World Cup… there was lenience given in the hope that we would succeed at the World Cup and make it deep into the tournament.”

The exact spending breakdown remains unclear, raising questions about potential extravagance during Jones’s tenure and highlighting the need for accountability.

Eddie Jones and a Legacy of Distrust

Jones’s time with the Wallabies was dogged by controversy and ended after only 10 months of his five-year contract. Waugh refused to solely blame Jones or team manager Chris Webb, stating, “I’m not going to point the finger at one individual. I think it was a cultural deficiency that we need to rectify.”

However, player feedback paints a troubling picture. “The lack of trust certainly comes through,” said Waugh, highlighting a breakdown in coach-player relations under Eddie Jones’s leadership.

This financial scandal is a damaging blow to Rugby Australia, which relies heavily on the Wallabies’ success. The failed World Cup campaign and subsequent overspending could jeopardize future investment in the sport throughout Australia.