Former Wales wing Mark Jones could be poised for a shock appointment as England defence coach.
The 41-year-old, who barely two years ago was coaching RGC 1404 in the Welsh Premiership, is being lined up for a role under Eddie Jones.
The news comes after John Mitchell’s surprise decision to quit as Jones’ defence chief, with the New Zealander having been in the job for just five months. He is said to be joining Wasps.
His departure could open the way for Jones to return to the Test scene after he worked in the Wales set-up between 2012 and 2013.
Read more : How Mark Jones nailed down ‘dream job’ in New Zealand
The deal with England isn’t done yet, though.
Jones signed a three-year contract for a senior assistant coach role with Worcester Warriors in January and would need the club’s permission to move on.
Assuming they give him the go-ahead, there seems a decent chance of the switch happening.
For Jones, it shows how quickly fortunes change.
After leaving the then Wayne Pivac-coached Scarlets in 2015, citing differences in rugby philosophy and direction, he pitched up at Rotherham Titans in the English Championship before switching to RGC1404, whom he steered to the Welsh Cup in 2017.
The club were hailed for their exciting attacking style under Jones.
His big move came in January 2020 when he left for New Zealand to work under Scott Robertson at the Crusaders.
Returning to the UK at the start of this year, he did so amid plaudits from Worcester director of rugby Alan Solomons, who said of him: “Mark has developed into an outstanding coach and a first-class person.”
Now England appear to think well of him, too.
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