Former Wallabies Andrew Slack and Justin Harrison, along with high performance expert Darlene Harrison, will conduct a review of Australia’s dismal 2023 season and World Cup failure under departed coach Eddie Jones.
An inexperienced Wallabies squad bowed out at the World Cup group stage for the first time in the tournament’s history, triggering a storm of criticism of Jones and Rugby Australia. Under Jones, who announced his resignation last weekend, the Wallabies won only two out of nine Tests in 2023.
Coachless and clueless: where does Rugby Australia go after Eddie Jones? | Angus FontaineRead more
The three-member panel will review the “strategy and structure of the Wallabies’ performance environment” and aims to deliver its recommendations to the Rugby Australia (RA) board before the end of the year, RA said in a statement.
“As rugby fans, we were all disappointed in the results at the World Cup – the performance was not good enough for a proud rugby nation like ours,” said RA CEO Phil Waugh.
Slack led the Wallabies to the Grand Slam triumph in 1984 when they beat all four of the “home nations” – England, Wales, Ireland and Scotland. He also led Australia at the inaugural World Cup in 1987.
Former Wallabies lock Harrison played 34 Tests, including the World Cup final won by England in 2003, and is CEO of Australia’s players union.
A Pasifika advisor will also support the panel and process, RA said. The Wallabies squad features many players with Pacific islands heritage.
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“The Wallabies have a proud history as one of Australia’s most loved sporting teams, and it is our responsibility as custodians to continually seek to improve performance and deliver a world-class program,” said Waugh.