Eddie Jones, the most successful rugby coach England has ever had, was today sacked from his job.
Richard Cockerill takes interim charge, ahead of the expected appointment of Steve Borthwick as Jones’ successor. Seven years and 16 days after taking the job following England’s home World Cup flop, Jones left the home of English rugby for the last time in a black Mercedes.
Sweeney said: “It is important to recognise the huge contribution Eddie has made to English rugby, winning three Six Nations Championships, one Grand Slam and taking us to a Rugby World Cup Final.
“He has the highest win ratio of any previous England head coach and has helped develop the leadership skills of many players and coaches.
“I am grateful to Eddie for all he has done for England across many areas of the game and the professional way in which he has approached reviewing the performance of the team.
“He has provided the panel with astute insight and meaningful lessons that will support the team performance going forward.”
In his departing statement Jones said he was “pleased with much that we have achieved as an England team” and said he looks forward to watching the team’s performance in the future.
“Many of the players and I will no doubt keep in touch,” he added. “I wish them all well in their future careers.”
Jones’ sacking, after 81 Tests and 59 wins, was branded a “big mistake” by Aussie great Matt Giteau.
“It would have to be the silliest thing they could do to the English rugby team,” said the former Wallaby.
“He plans & plans & plans years in advance for this competition. [The World Cup’s] the one competition that he has got consistently right time and time again.”