Jones masterminds another big upset at Rugby World Cup
YOKOHAMA, Japan (AP) — Eddie Jones has done it again, this time with England.
The mastermind of the "Miracle of Brighton" which sent ripples through the sporting world, Jones has now ended the All Blacks' eight-year reign as the kings of rugby.
England's 19-7 win over New Zealand in the Rugby World Cup semifinals on Saturday was 2 ½ years in the making for Jones, the team's first foreign-born coach. All that planning resulted in one of the best English performances in their history.
Jones stood in a technical box for much of the match, swaying from side to side. He looked pensive, determined, but not nervous.
Jones has been a dominant figure at the World Cup ever since leading his native Australia to the final in 2003, somewhat against the odds, where it lost to England. Four years later, he was a consultant for South Africa when the Springboks won the global tournament for the second time.
As Japan coach, he was the architect of the most staggering result in the sport's history, a 34-32 win over South Africa. Now he has changed the fortunes of England, from a team that failed to get out of the pool stage at its home World Cup in 2015 to this win over the All Blacks and another World Cup final.
The master of the mind games, Jones asked a room full of reporters during the week whether England had a chance of winning on Saturday. Barely a hand was raised.
Jones knew, though.
Steve Douglas is at www.twitter.com/sdouglas80