Vitriolic Eddie Jones went too far, says Michael Cheika

Michael Cheika believes Eddie Jones has tarnished his legacy with Australia, claiming his compatriot unloaded “vitriol” on the Wallabies in June’s Test series with England.

England host Australia on Saturday in an already highly-charged Twickenham clash, but Wallabies boss Cheika has raised the stakes again by hitting back at Jones’ verbal salvos.

Cheika insists former Australia boss Jones damaged his achievements with the Wallabies, that included guiding the nation to the 2003 World Cup final, during England’s 3-0 summer series victory down under.

Jones accused the Australian media of an orchestrated campaign against his side in June, and Cheika now feels his former Randwick team-mate dented his standing in his homeland.

“There was a lot of vitriol about Australia, his home nation,” said Cheika of England head coach Jones’ verbal sparring during the summer tour of Australia.

“It’s where he coached, where the opportunities were given to him to grow up as a coach, and play.

“Personally if you’re looking to leave a legacy somewhere, you don’t want to hit back at it when you leave.”

England boss Jones reignited the war of words with Cheika ahead of Saturday’s Twickenham clash with Australia, by hinting at illegal scrummaging from the Wallabies.

Jones has demanded a meeting with referee Jaco Peyper, to focus on the Wallabies’ set-piece play. Cheika laughed off those tactics in the immediate aftermath of Australia’s 27-24 loss to Ireland in Dublin on Saturday but yesterday in London, suggested Jones had pushed the verbals too far.

“I’m not 100% sure what’s gone on after Saturday, but I’m sure he’ll be into it,” said Cheika, of Jones’ mind games. “In June I sort of gave the opportunity to see how a former Australian would deal with it. It’s a bit like the goal-scorer who scores against his old team, you know? I suppose it’s always difficult when you go back into a tournament where you’re playing teams you’ve coached before.”

Meanwhile Elliot Daly has been banned for three weeks after his red card for tackling Leonardo Senatore in the air in England’s 27-14 win over Argentina. The 24-year-old Wasps utility back Daly accepted he deserved a red card and a disciplinary panel imposed an initial six-week suspension, halved on mitigating factors.


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