Japan head coach Eddie Jones has revealed that he will step down from his role after the Rugby World Cup.
Jones said he wanted to put an end to all the speculation about his future so that his players and backroom staff could concentrate on their World Cup effort.
“The (Japan Rugby Football) Union are going to announce this afternoon that I will not be continuing after 2015,” he told Kyodo News.
“That was always the case as my contract was until the end of the year, so all they are doing is stating the obvious.
“People assumed that as I had been named the director of the new Super Rugby side I would stay on. But that was just an administrative role not a coaching role. All I was doing was helping get it set up.”
Last week Jones admitted that he is negotiating with the Stormers to take over as their head coach although he said he hasn't signed any contract with the Cape Town-based franchise.
But his latest revelation seems to confirm that he will now become the first Australian to coach a South African Super Rugby franchise.
“I have coached for 20 years, and coached the Wallabies for five years," added Jones.
"And with hindsight I should have left after four. Four years is enough for an international coach and I have put a lot into this. It’s been one of the hardest jobs I have done.”
Jones said he informed his players of his decision on Tuesday and he hopes the squad will remain focused on the World Cup.
“My focus was always to change Japanese rugby history and ensure Japan was a serious rugby nation by the time I left,” he explained.
He would not comment on anything other than the Brave Blossoms' upcoming World Cup campaign.
“The decision doesn’t change anything we have done or are going to do," said Jones.
"The players aren’t thinking past the World Cup. We are just focused on what we have to do.
“And by making the decision now, it’s a great opportunity for the JRFU to find a new person with a new perspective and new ideas so he can build a team towards 2019.”