Japan head coach Eddie Jones is in intensive care in Tokyo after suffering a stroke, the Guardian reports.
Jones, who has previously coached Australia and assisted former South Africa head coach Jake White to a World Cup triumph in 2007, reportedly complained of a headache following a training camp on Tuesday night.
Worrying news. Former Aus coach & current Japan coach Eddie Jones reportedly in intensive care after suffering a stroke Via @GavinMairs— Rugby World (@Rugbyworldmag) October 16, 2013
The Sydney Morning Herald reports that he was then accompanied to hospital in a taxi by the Japanese side's medical staff.
White told Keo.co.za:
He is in intensive care and he currently doesn't have movement on his left side but he is talking – and typical of Eddie – it's about the challenge of the All Blacks and the subsequent European tour.
My understanding is he will be in intensive care for at least the next week.
My prayers and thoughts are with him, as I am sure will be the case with all those who know him and have had the privilege of working with him.
A spokeswoman for the Japan Rugby Football Union confirmed, per Sky Sports:
He was with the team's staff at the time and they went together to a hospital in Tokyo by taxi.
The doctors said he was showing signs of a light cerebral infarction and he was hospitalised for examination.
Jones had begun life as Japan coach in positive fashion, comfortably winning back-to-back Asian Five Nations titles and securing summer wins over Wales, USA and Canada.
Success over Wales, although the visitors were heavily depleted by the concurrent Lions tour, was seen as a major step for Japanese rugby in Jones' vision of entering the world's top 10 nations ahead of the 2015 World Cup, per Macau Daily Times.
Japan will host the World Cup in 2019 and Jones, himself half-Japanese per RugbyWorldCup.com, was the man identified to build a competitive side by the time of that tournament.
Defeats to Tonga and Fiji in this year's Pacific Nations Cup indicate the size of the task ahead, but with New Zealand set to play in Japan on Nov. 2 before the two nations head on tours of Europe, progress is clearly being made in arranging more frequent encounters with a high standard of opponent.
Attention will now turn to Jones' health and recovery following Tuesday's reported stroke. Having coached in several countries, he is a popular figure in world rugby, and the hope will be that he can make a full recovery.
Thoughts are with Eddie Jones & his family. Reports r he's had a stroke. My first Wallaby coach who picked me out of club football #getwell— Matt Giteau (@giteau_rugby) October 16, 2013
Jones coached Australia to the final of the 2003 World Cup before leaving the post in 2005. He would go one better in 2007, though, when he was part of the Springboks management that secured the world title—with Jones' 2003 rivals England defeated in the final.
The Australian then spent two seasons coaching in England before moving to Japan in 2009, initially with club side Suntory Sungoliath. He won two Japanese championships with the club, bringing in Australian stars George Smith and Peter Hewat, as well as South African scrum-half Fourie du Preez.