Eddie Jones favourite to land Lions role

England coach Eddie Jones is favourite to succeed Warren Gatland as coach of the British & Irish Lions.

New Zealander Gatland, coach of Wales, has led the Lions on their last two tours – a victory in Australia and a credible draw in New Zealand earlier this year.

However, Gatland was the subject of major criticism for his selections on the most recent tour, which also included calling up low calibre replacements based on the fact they were based locally.

Now Gatland – who will leave his job with Wales in 2019 – has confirmed he will not lead the Lions on their next tour, which is to South Africa in 2021.

“I’m done. Let someone else reinvent the wheel,” said Gatland.

“I hated the tour. I did. I just hated the press and the negativity in New Zealand.

“When I look back on it now, there were a lot of things that were satisfying and what an achievement it was, but it was tough work. It was hard.”

Now England supremo Jones is leading the early betting ahead of new Scottish coach Gregor Townsend.

“Eddie Jones is an obvious choice although our compilers believe that Gregor could prove to be a very popular choice,” said William Hill spokesman Rupert Adams.

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