Eddie Jones' 2023 World Cup campaign as the Australia head coach was as expensive as it was chaotic, it has been revealed

Rugby Australia chief Phil Waugh has hit out at the “unacceptable” overspend during Eddie Jones’ disastrous 2023 World Cup campaign.

Waugh revealed on Thursday that $2.6 million in unapproved expenses related to the sport’s showpiece event in Paris last Year was put through the RA books.

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Jones led the Wallabies to a first-ever World Cup group-stage exit in France and has since left his post to rejoin Japan as the head coach.

“The over-investment that was unapproved was $2.6 million, which covered three main elements, being team costs, staff travel and then player benefits,” Waugh said on Thursday.

“So a lot of that came through post-World Cup. You want to set the team up for success. I mean, the reality is that 86 per cent of our revenue comes through the men’s fifteens program for Rugby Australia, and a successful World Cup program is critical to that.

“And I guess, yeah, there was lenience given in the hope that we would succeed at the World Cup and make it deep into the tournament.

“Clearly that didn’t happen, but the circumstances were quite unique.

“Delegation of authority is important and clearly there were breaches in that area and we’ve made personnel changes on the back of some of those breaches.

“That over-investment, that’s not acceptable and it won’t happen going forward.”

Jones’ second stint in charge of the Wallabies was mired in controversy and ended just 10 months into a five-year deal. However, Waugh refused to blame the former England head coach or Australia World Cup manager Chris Webb.

“I’m not going to point the finger at one individual,” he added. “I think it was a cultural deficiency that we need to rectify.”

Waugh did give an insight into player feedback about Jones’ ill-fated tenure, revealing that they felt a disconnect from the coach.

“The lack of trust certainly comes through and we talk through elements of culture as well as governance there,” Waugh continued. “The actual specifics of Eddie and the linkages to Japan, not so much.

“But I think that’s the broader lack of trust across the system.”

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