Alan Jones 'at $6' to coach Wallabies - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Alan Jones 'at $6' to coach Wallabies

25/10/2007 07:05:28 PM Comments (0)

The push for influential media personality Alan Jones to become Wallabies coach has gained momentum - albeit from an Australian betting agency.

Sportingbet Australia has Jones at $6 to take over from John Connolly - behind only Kiwi Robbie Deans ($2.50), David Nucifora ($4), Scott Johnson ($4.50) and Ewen McKenzie ($5.50).

Queensland rugby boss Peter Lewis caused a stir when he called for Jones to return as Australian coach - almost 20 years after his last stint.

Suggesting the man who powered the Wallabies to the 1984 Grand Slam and 1986 Bledisloe Cup triumphs has polarised opinions.

But Sportingbet Australia rates Jones as a serious threat, according to their market.

He is at better odds than an all star cast - ACT Brumbies mentor Laurie Fisher ($13), Western Force and ex-All Blacks coach John Mitchell ($13), Wallabies assistant John Muggleton ($17) and South Africa's World Cup-winning Jake White ($17).

Former Wallaby and current ARU high performance unit manager Pat Howard is rated the smokey at $34.

"I actually think that Jones is exactly the sort of coach the Wallabies need and he is well in the market at $6.00," Sportingbet Australia betting manager Bill Richmond said.

"But I think that the ARU will look to one of the new age coaches who seem to be in vogue these days."

Richmond believed Deans would get the nod - if he wasn't snapped up by the All Blacks first.

"Deans has an outstanding provincial record and looks to be the ARU's top choice, but the complication is that he would prefer to coach the All Blacks and he has to be a serious chance after the performance at the World Cup," said Richmond.

"Of the others, obviously Nucifora has the credentials but there are complications with some of the senior players and Scott Johnson is already in the set-up and is clearly well regarded.

"I personally think that Deans, Nucifora, Johnson and Jones are the only hopes but wouldn't be completely shocked if McKenzie or one or two of the others got the job."

Deans, Nucifora, Muggleton, Johnson, McKenzie and Fisher are on the ARU's official short-list for the Wallabies job.

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