Dual international Wendell Sailor feels sorry for his former coach Eddie Jones, believing the players should accept just as much blame for the Wallabies’ disappointing tour of Europe.
Australia were beaten in three of their four games on the November tour, going down to France, England and Wales – with a win over Ireland in Dublin between the latter two defeats – and Sailor feels responsible for the Australian Rugby Union’s decision to sack Jones.
"Not many people are aware that Eddie averages four hours sleep a night. But at the end of the day, when the last tackle has been made, it’s up to the players to perform," Sailor wrote in The Sunday Telegraph.
"There was never any hint of internal rumblings or any back-stabbing of Eddie from the players. We always had faith in his ideas and team structures.
"In fact, had we carried out his game plans to the letter, we’re all sure we would have won a lot more matches.
"As a Wallaby, I feel responsible for it. I know the results tell a sad story, but on tour some players, including myself at stages, didn’t hold up our end of the bargain.
"There’s a certain amount of ownership that falls back on to the players and I don’t think you can just blame the coach. As Wallabies players, we all played a major role in Eddie’s sacking."
Sailor also believes that the Wallabies would have performed far better had they been able to choose the likes of Stephen Larkham, Stirling Mortlock and Jeremy Paul.
"We played away against the greatest rugby nations in the world, leaving four or five world-class players at home. It was one of the toughest tours I’ve been on," Sailor added.