Rugby-Australia coach Jones pans New Zealand over All Blacks coach appointment

FILE PHOTO: Rugby Union - International - Wales v New Zealand - Principality Stadium, Cardiff, Wales, Britain - November 5, 2022 New Zealand head coach Ian Foster before the match Action Images via Reuters/John Sibley

MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Australia coach Eddie Jones has criticised New Zealand for its handling of Scott Robertson's appointment as All Blacks coach, saying the timing was "inappropriate" with Ian Foster still in charge.

Governing body New Zealand Rugby confirmed this week that Robertson, the boss of Canterbury Crusaders boss, would succeed Foster as All Blacks coach after the Sept. 8-Oct. 28 World Cup in France.

"I think it's really poor how New Zealand Rugby have done it," Jones said on his podcast "Eddie".

"Ian Foster's here now, he's a good man, a good rugby man and he's given a lot to New Zealand Rugby as assistant coach and now head coach.

"I just think the timing's inappropriate, leading into a World Cup, naming their coach beforehand just causes another distraction they don't need.

"Maybe if they had their time again they'd handle it a little bit differently but ... that seems to be the way of the world now."

New Zealand Rugby (NZR) were unable to make immediate comment but said this month they had decided to move early on picking a successor for Foster due to competition for talent.

Foster, who repeatedly urged NZR to wait until after the World Cup, declined to re-apply for his job.

Jones, who was sacked by England last December before replacing Dave Rennie as Australia coach, said rugby was becoming more ruthless in dismissing coaches for underperformance.

"Having experienced both sides of it myself, it's a changing world for professional coaches in rugby," he said.

"We're starting to move towards that more football model of, three games aren't very good, your fourth game better be good or you won't be in the chair.

"You get the phone call, come to training, the chairman wants to meet you at 8 a.m., and you know it's not for avocado on toast."

(Reporting by Ian Ransom in Melbourne; Editing by ...)

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