England Rugby reiterates support for Jones

Duncan Bech
England Rugby says it fully supports Eddie Jones, but can't guarantee he'll coach at the World Cup

Eddie Jones retains the Rugby Football Union's support but chairman Andy Cosslett insists Twickenham would be willing to act by making a change at any point before next year's World Cup if deemed necessary.

Cosslett has stopped short of guaranteeing Jones will remain England's head coach by the time Japan 2019 arrives but has been encouraged by the victorious end to this month's tour of South Africa.

The five-Test losing run that began in the Six Nations and includes a series defeat by the Springboks concluded on Saturday with a 25-10 win in the third and final Test at Newlands.

Jones faced the first calls for his removal after the series was surrendered in Bloemfontein last weekend, but Cosslett insists his success in leading England out of the post-2015 World Cup doldrums is still valued by the RFU.

Cosslett refuses to insure the Australian's post from threat before Japan 2019, however.

"Things happen at the most inconvenient time - that's what life does. There is no time limit and you make decisions on the basis of the evidence or information you have at any given moment," Cosslett said.

"Hopefully we won't have to face that and we will have a run through to the World Cup.

"We have shown a lot of confidence in Eddie and we think he is still the man, but we will see where it goes to from here in terms of the next few months.

"You're asking for unconditional support but only my children get that. And even then not always.

"It's not something you give because you're under assessment the whole time. It's just not what we do.

"Eddie has earned the right to make a strong case for the way ahead. We'll listen to his review of the tour and it will be fascinating to hear what he's got to say.

"Eddie came to our union when it was at its lowest ebb after the World Cup. He grabbed it and took us on this extraordinary run.

"He has tremendous credit at the union for what he's done. We're very grateful to him for what he did at the time when we needed it most. We've had a reversal, which now hopefully we've sprung out of it."