Aussie newspaper labels Jones a ‘çlown’


Underneath the headline "Introducing The Real Clown of Rugby", Saturday's front page of The Australian's sports section carried a caricature of a smiling Jones, the England coach, with sharpened teeth.

The Australian was painted with a St George's Cross, the national flag of England, against the backdrop of a red rose -- the emblem of the England rugby union team.

In October, Australia coach Michael Cheika was depicted as an angry clown by The New Zealand Herald newspaper under the banner "Send in the Clowns".

Jones, Wallabies boss when they lost the 2003 World Cup final to England in Sydney, has repeatedly hit out at the "disrespectful" treatment he felt his current side received during a June tour of Australia that saw England win a Test series 3-0.

But a piece written by Bret Harris, a long-serving rugby writer on The Australian, that accompanied the caricature said: "Forget Michael Cheika. Eddie Jones is the real clown of the world rugby circus.

"Jones is no bumbling buffoon or jovial jester. He is a menacing clown with a dark side, terrorising poor Cheika as if he were part of the creepy clown craze that has swept the world.

"He does not even need make-up or a costume to act the clown, just those mischievous eyes, cheeky grin and eviscerating one-liners.

"A Jones media conference is like a dark carnival where he dissects his victims with the sharpest of tongues.

"Jones is a master of using black comedy to belittle his adversaries and no one has been the victim of his invective more than Cheika, who in turn has looked bemused and besieged."

Jones did not comment at a pre-match news conference on Friday when asked about his treatment by The Australian.

Cheika, however, made no secret of his feelings about his clown portrait after New Zealand's 37-10 win over Australia in Auckland in October saw the world champions set a new record of 18 consecutive Test wins by a leading rugby nation.

"They dressed us up as clowns today. They put our crest on it, so they wouldn’t want our comment,” Cheika said when asked for his view on the All Blacks' record-breaking achievement.

“I don’t think they respect our comment, anyway, so we won’t make one.”

Cheika, once a team-mate of Jones at Sydney club Randwick, has been noticeably more outspoken this week, saying the England coach risked tarnishing his legacy at home and had a "chip on his shoulder".


Original source: Aussie newspaper labels Jones a ‘çlown’