Nick Mallett says he will not apply for the vacant England head coach post following the resignation of Martin Johnson.
Media reports believed former Springbok and Italy coach Mallett was one of the favourites to replace Johnson after the latter announced stepping down on Wednesday. However, in a statement released on Wednesday night, Mallett said he will not put his name forward.
‘The RFU contacted me earlier this week to enquire about my availability for the position, should Martin Johnson resign. I had previously expressed my interest in the position publicly and was interested to hear what RFU representatives had to say,’ said Mallett.
‘After mulling it over for a few days and discussing the opportunity with close friends and family, I have decided that I will not be making myself available for the position and I have disclosed this to the RFU.’
Mallett listed family reasons for not making himself available.
‘I am happy to have returned home to South Africa after a tremendous four-year term with the Italian national team. We are settled in Cape Town and it is my wish to be able to enjoy time with my wife and kids after four years in Italy.
‘The job of England coach is one of the most prestigious in world rugby and I wish them all the best in their quest for the best possible man for the job.’
Meanwhile, former Wallabies coach Eddie Jones, who is currently based at Japanese club Suntory, confirmed his interest in succeeding Johnson.
‘You’d always be interested in coaching England,’ Jones told BBC Radio. ‘It has got a fantastic domestic competition, very, very good players and you have just got to get the right program in place and they should be good enough to win the next World Cup.’