Jones takes the reins with Japan in countdown to 2015 World Cup
Former Australia manager Eddie Jones will replace New Zealand”s John Kirwan as Japan”s coach.
Former All Blacks winger Kirwan will step down from his role when his contract expires at the end of this month.
Jones, the coach of Japan”s Top League rugby side Suntory Sungoliath since 2009, has a contract from April 2012 to the end of the 2015 World Cup in England.
Welcome Eddie Jones (right) with his assistant Masahiro Kunda
“I”m very excited and honoured to have the job as head coach of Japan,” Jones said.
“The first thing we”re going to have to do is to win. I want Japan to win and be in the top 10 in the world. We need to develop a solid play that suits Japanese players.”
Jones, 51, coached the Wallabies team beaten by England in the 2003 World Cup final but tasted success in 2007 as a consultant to the victorious South Africa team.
Masahiro Kunda will be Jones” assistant with the pair taking up their roles after the Australian finishes the season with Sungoliath, who he led to the national championship last term.
Under Kirwan, Japan”s “Brave Blossoms” returned home without a victory at this year”s World Cup in New Zealand and have not won a match at the finals since beating Zimbabwe 52-8 in 1991.
“We”ve got a very big challenge ahead us,” Jones said. “The great thing about Japanese rugby is we have a very strong domestic company competition and strong university and high school competitions. We”re going to quickly add in 30 or 40 players for the next World Cup.”