Eddie Jones has indicated he would quit his role as England head coach if he leads the nation to World Cup glory in Japan in 2019.
Jones has won all nine games in charge since replacing Stuart Lancaster last year and could stretch that run to 13 in the forthcoming autumn internationals.
And the 56-year-old, who masterminded Japan’s famous World Cup win over South Africa last year, says he is still keen to seek fresh challenges in the game. Jones told BBC Radio Five Live’s Sportsweek:
“I want to win the World Cup but once you’ve won the World Cup I think there’s other projects you could be involved in to make the game better. I’m lucky to be involved in a great sport like rugby and having done something with Japan that people thought you couldn’t do, I’d love to do that in another country.
“Who knows – we’ll wait until end of the World Cup then we’ll take it from there.”
Jones’s current contract with the RFU runs until the end of the next World Cup and his successful start is raising hopes of what could prove a glittering climax to his tenure. The no-nonsense Australian dismissed suggestions he is ruling by fear at Twickenham but maintains it is important to keep a healthy distance from his players.
He added: “I don’t think they (the players) are frightened but in any high-performance environment you need a certain level of discomfort.
“As a coach the players are never your friends. You have a great deal of respect for them but you’ve got to have a certain level of emotional distance because you’re in a working situation and half the week you’re telling them you love them, and then there’s some parts of the week you’re telling players they’re not going to play.”
England begin their autumn international campaign South Africa on November 12 before also facing Australia, Argentina and Fiji. Four wins would crown an unbeaten first year in charge for Jones but he insisted the record would pale into insignificance compared with the longer-term prospect of building the team towards Japan.
“That (remaining unbeaten all year) is the target,” added Jones. “We’ve put ourselves in a great position to achieve that but that would be the icing on the cake. “What’s more important is that the players keep growing, the team keeps developing, because ultimately we want to win the World Cup in 2019.”
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