• Home
  • /
  • Rugby
  • /
  • NZ Media Pay Glowing Tribute To Schmidt...And Slam English Press' Treatment Of Jones

NZ Media Pay Glowing Tribute To Schmidt...And Slam English Press' Treatment Of Jones

NZ Media Pay Glowing Tribute To Schmidt...And Slam English Press' Treatment Of Jones
By Gavin Cooney
Share this article

The Six Nations rarely makes waves in the Southern Hemisphere, but the Grand Slam Showdown between Ireland and England has clogged a few column inches in New Zealand today. The NZ Herald have focused on the respective coaches, and have taken contrasting approaches.

Gregor Paul, probably the main rugby writer in New Zealand, is glowing in his praise of Schmidt writing that if Ireland win this afternoon, Schmidt "will be anointed with near Messiah status", adding that there is "already there is talk of him being Ireland's greatest ever coach of anything".


While the piece points out what he's done well with Ireland - the fact that Ireland have now beaten all of the top ten sides in world rugby over the last two years - there  is talk of what Schmidt will do next. The expectation to now has been that Schmidt will return to New Zealand after the 2019 World Cup to take a coaching role in his native country before eventually taking the helm with the All Blacks.

Paul, however, raises a truly frightening prospect:

He is the man everyone wants. Ireland, where Schmidt has been at the helm since 2013, will be doing everything they can to extend his contract beyond the 2019 World Cup.

Schmidt, a proud New Zealander, is also a compelling candidate to take over from Steve Hansen and NZR will already consider him to be on the shortlist.

There appears to be an increasing desire among NZR top brass to emphasise that they have not committed to a succession plan where current assistant Ian Foster will take over coaching the All Blacks in 2020.

England, too, would no doubt welcome an application from Schmidt to succeed Eddie Jones in 2021 and there will be endless clubs across Europe offering ridiculous money.

Virtually every door in world rugby will be open to Schmidt after the World Cup and he will be in the luxurious position of being able to choose which one he walks through.

Jones, meanwhile, has moved beyond sparking outrage and condemnation from the Herald. Instead, Paul Lewis writes that he feels sorry for him amid the vituperative English media.


Truth be told, I feel kind of sorry for Jones, even with all the smart-ass stuff he indulges in – usually to unsettle opponents. At least he brings some colour to things.

His reference to Wales and Ireland was really just typical Aussie hubris; throwaway stuff at one of those sports gatherings where the audience wants to hear "the real oil" or some boys-will-be-boys behind-the-scenes hilarity.

And the joke's on Eddie – he got all moral about the Scottish supporters being beastly to him and then had to apologise contritely to Wales and Ireland.

His next gig could be the British & Irish Lions. Only it doesn't look so good if you call them "The British and shit place and scummy Irish Lions", does it?

Worse, Jones is on thin ice with the English media, who have been sharpening their canines for some time now while pretending to love him....

...But what he faces was probably personified by someone called Oliver Brown writing in London's Daily Telegraph. He chose Jones' foot-in-mouth to recall other instances when Australian coaches had baited other small countries, principally New Zealand, and trotted out sheep jokes – the archetypal Englishman looking down his nose at the colonies.

Haw haw. Haven't laughed so much since Brexit. In that snide put-down of a country smaller than his own, Brown displays what Jones also has to fight against. It's a struggle he will eventually lose.

They all do, in time.

Read both pieces in full on the 


See Also: Jamie Heaslip Was Baffled By Eddie O'Sullivan's 'White Boots' Warning

Join The Monday Club Have a tip or something brilliant you wanted to share on? We're looking for loyal Balls readers free-to-join members club where top tipsters can win prizes and Balls merchandise

Processing your request...

You are subscribed now!

Share this article

Copyright © 2023. All rights reserved. Developed by Square1 and powered by PublisherPlus.com