What was it John Lennon once said?
“Keep on playing those mind games, forever…”
England Coach Eddie Jones showed an aptitude for the mental side of football, attempting to put all the pressure on New Zealand ahead of the two sides’ 2019 Rugby World Cup semifinal.
“They (New Zealand) have to deal with all this pressure of winning the World Cup three times and it is potentially the last game for their greatest coach and their greatest captain and they will be thinking about those things.” Jones told reporters.
Jones, born is Tasmania, would be an okay candidate for the open position with the Wallabies, at least in the eyes of recently deposed Michael Cheika.
Being born in Tasmania makes Jones an Australian, right?
Jones has served his time. He coached the Wallabies in 2001 and managed to get to the World Cup in 2003 by beating New Zealand before losing the final to…wait for it…England.
Those with an appreciation for irony and a love of history will point out that Jones experienced a fate similar to Cheika’s when the Wallabies lost eight of their last nine matches during a tour of Europe. He was sacked when Australia lost to Wales in December of 2005.
As was the recent case in 2018 were Rugby Australia conducted its inquisition over the fate of Cheika, Jones was set to face the inquisitors were posed to test Jones’ faith, but the loss to Wales was sin enough to result in Jones’ dismissal before the investigation could get underway.
Jones is no stranger to pressure. He was leading England in the 2015 Rugby World Cup, hosted by England, when the squad failed to make it beyond the pool stage.
So when he mentioned that the All Blacks mental skills coach Gilbert Enoka would be the “Busiest bloke in Tokyo this week,” he might have been attempting to keep New Zealand’s winning margin in the semifinal under 10.