Eddie Jones was not giving anything away when asked about his England future but did admit he doesn’t actually enjoy coaching.
The 60-year-old made the surprising claim after revealing he will hold talks with Rugby Football Union chief executive Bill Sweeney about extending his contract through to the 2023 World Cup.
Contracted until next summer, it will be hoped he stays on after Jones guided England to top spot in the Six Nations with a thrilling 33-30 victory over Wales. However, it seems tying him to a new deal won’t be straightforward after he suggested his role can be a slog and that winning is only a temporary respite from the rigours of international coaching.
“I think we’ve got dinner organised in a couple of weeks so we may be able to chat about it,” The Guardian reported Jones said when it was put to him about extending his contract.
Asked if he enjoyed the role, he candidly revealed: “I never enjoy coaching. Winning is a relief. Anyone who tells you they enjoy coaching is lying. All you do is coach hard. If you win you feel good for 24 hours and then you’re back into it. That’s all it is.
“It’s a choice you make. You get to coach these extraordinary, gifted players. You give them something that helps develop them as a player and a person. The joy you get from that is unbelievable, but generally, any coach who says they find coaching enjoyable is probably not telling the truth.”
England would stand only one victory away from clinching the Grand Slam had they defeated France in the opener, though losing that opening fixture meant they had to come from behind to take top spot.
“I haven’t got any regrets over France. What I do know is that we are in a position where we can win the championship and that’s where I want to be,” he told the media, as reported by the Press Association.
“I just think you can’t put a figure on it but I think the team is growing, we have that feeling that we are growing.
“We played a tough game against Wales, we played some brilliant rugby against Ireland last week, played some sensible rugby against Scotland after what was a disappointing game against France. And that was 100 per cent my fault for the preparation we gave the players. I’m really pleased with the way we finished the tournament.”
Despite leading the way, England may have to wait to celebrate should they get over the line with the Coronavirus seeing games postponed in Italy, heavily hit by the virus. It is unknown when the delayed games will eventually take place but Jones isn’t focusing too heavily on the rearrangement.
“I’m not assuming anything, I’m not worried about it until someone says, ‘Eddie we’re playing it on this date’. Then we’ll worry about it,” he said.