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White hoping Jones's brief time with Brumbies will help team


Chris Dutton

Insight ... Former Wallabies coach Eddie Jones will visit Canberra next month.

Insight ... Former Wallabies coach Eddie Jones will visit Canberra next month. Photo: Chris McGrath/Getty Images

ACT Brumbies coach Jake White hopes former Wallabies mentor Eddie Jones can provide the "fresh eyes" his young team needs to ensure it continues its rapid Super Rugby improvement.

Jones will join the Brumbies briefly in April in his role as a consultant to cast his eye over training and pass on advice to White, his coaching staff and the players.

It was originally hoped Jones would join the Brumbies on their tour of South Africa as part of his six weeks working with the club.

But because he has taken a Japanese coaching job, he is unable to travel to the games against the Pretoria Bulls and Johannesburg Lions next month.

White is still keen to get valuable input from Jones – who was in charge of the Brumbies from 1998-2001 – into how his team is evolving.

"I thought Eddie would have been great for us in South Africa because it would be a change and a new voice over there," White said. "The Japanese job has taken up most of his time, but I still deal with him a lot.

"He will be out here in two-and-a-half weeks, spending a day here looking at us to see if he can help us going forward. What is nice is there is no brief for his role.

"I trust Eddie enough to listen to what he says, but that doesn't mean everything he says will be done.

"It's more just to bounce ideas off each other and from the outside he looks at ways he thinks that teams will play against us or ways which we can improve as a group."

The Brumbies will aim for their third consecutive victory at home when they play the Otago Highlanders at Canberra Stadium on Saturday night.

White is expected to make minimal changes to his team for the round five clash.

Captain Ben Mowen was rested from training again yesterday with a stiff back, but he will line up at No. 8.

Rookie lock Sam Carter is in contention to win back his place in the starting XV and Nic White is a chance of getting the No 9 jersey back if he overcomes his illness.

Nic White has been battling a virus for the past three weeks and started on the bench against the Waikato Chiefs last weekend.

The Brumbies have just two specialist scrumhalves on their roster – White and Ian Prior. They have just 14 Super Rugby caps between them.

Brumbies backs coach Stephen Larkham said White and Prior were still developing their games and they offered different strengths to the team.

"We've been really impressed with Ian and he's worked particularly hard on his kicking game and what's pleasing is he's getting results in the games," Larkham said.

"Both [Prior and White] are very good, there are some subtleties in their games which we've been using in the past couple of rounds.

"The hard thing with the halfback is that if you bring one off the bench and he gets injured there's no replacement because it's a specialty position.

"We've already spoken to the guys and that's going to be a delicate balance because you want to give them experience, but we probably won't be able to give them both game time every week."

The Highlanders are undefeated and will pose a major challenge to the Brumbies.

But Prior said the players had already proved they could grind out a tough match.

"It will be a good test for us, we've proved in the last two games that we're a bunch of fighters and we'll go through the 80 minutes," he said.

"That's a good sign, I believe we're going to give it a good crack."

11 comments so far

  • Shambolic ARU permitting the SA defector to work in Oz rugby again.

    Nobody likes or trusts you Fast Eddie. Penny/drop.

    fort fumble
    tah hq
    Date and time
    March 21, 2012, 11:02AM
    • Yea Fort Fumble I tend to agree.

      What has Jones really achieved?-one tri-nations title when he had the greatest Aussie lock and captain of all time, (his inadequacies were soon exposed when Eales retired), a super title on the back of very well established international players and the only Aussie coach to have the luxury of contesting a RWC on home soil and yet he failed.

      Eight defeats out of nine matches on the disastrous Wallaby end of year tour that lead to his sacking and a record loss by the Reds to the Bulls.

      I think the real reason Eddie is coming is to bleed ideas off Jake he can take back to his bunch of Japanese worldbeaters. Eddie and Connolly were the most conservative and poor performing Wallaby coaches in living memory. Shockers. I dont want either of them popping up in any coaching role in Australian rugby ever again.

      I'm over them well and truely.

      Date and time
      March 21, 2012, 1:50PM
    • Jones is hardly a "SA defector". He had his contracted ended early by the ARU and was cast out. He was eligible to take a job wherever he could and White was smart enough to get Jones on his staff for the RWC. There was nothing improper in his actions, he is a coach and he took a coaching job.

      Date and time
      March 21, 2012, 4:00PM
    • Cry me a river FF. As if the ARU has a say in what the super franchises do. If only they did, maybe that shambolic old boys club known as the NSWRU might rid itself of it's rotten core...

      Onya Eddie. Love your work.

      At my desk
      Date and time
      March 22, 2012, 12:15PM
  • The Brumbies would have won last week if not for the brain snap of the halfback who, with three minutes left, had possession just inside halfway and put up a box kick to hand over possession. Surely a Jake White team should be able to pick and drive slowly for three minutes (and probably draw a penatly). Worse case scenario is to turn it over - same result as the box kick! Blighted an otherwise terrific performnace by the team. If I was king, the box kick would be a hanging offence.

    Date and time
    March 21, 2012, 12:28PM
    • You've only got a new zealander as a coach fort fumble. a New Zealander in the Wallaby front row, back row, and backline. The Waratha Scrum Coach has just got back from Ireland. The Reds coach just back from france. Foley was in the Bath in England..............Sack the bl***y lot of them I say. No such thing as pursuing a professional career in rugby!!! Lets keep it parochial.

      Date and time
      March 21, 2012, 6:23PM
      • Typical comment from a narrow minded Tahs supporter who doesn't understand that the game changed in 1996 - its now 2012 and still the waratahs haven't caught on to the new paradigm

        Date and time
        March 21, 2012, 10:27PM
        • @fort fumble
          Maybe Eddie should do the ARU the ultimate favour- throw his hat in the ring for the England job! Despite Lancaster doing a phenomenal job turning around Pommy fortunes with only a handful of top level games with which to prove himself, the RFU seem to have a hard on for Saffa management...

          Capt Footlong
          Date and time
          March 22, 2012, 3:48AM
          • Brumbies are going to lose this one, but that's OK, there's no shame in losing to the form team of the competition.

            The Claw
            Date and time
            March 22, 2012, 10:37AM
            • Lucky for me, nobody noticed that fearless prediction. Oops!

              The Claw
              Date and time
              March 28, 2012, 2:12PM

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