rock bottom - the latest from the wallabies


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Yes, this might be the broken record.

For someone who has always unwaveringly supported any side playing England in any sport – everyone needs a hobby – I may have reached rock bottom. I really believe two things about this game and Australian rugby.

1.     A sixty point loss is probably a good thing as it just might hasten the changing of the guard.

2.     I doubt even a sixty point thrashing will do that.

When is enough enough?

We have won 4 out of 13 this year. That includes a few wins against minnows. Pretty much nothing against any mob vaguely competent, but apparently that is good enough these days. We have been utterly lost since the last world cup. We are inept. We make the same mistakes week after week. We have the worst coaching team ever assembled since the Skins thought Jim Zorn was a good idea. We are run by an incompetent kiwi who has left a trail of destruction through her attempts to run other sports/clubs. But rugby thought she’d be better in this role. Or was there simply no one else? On top of this, the coach is an incompetent, arrogant fool.

I watched the Italy game last night. Unbelievable that people are defending it. Sure, we won (it was Italy, people, Italy), but it was a hell of a lot closer than the score. With a smidge of luck, Italy would have been 21-0 up after 15 minutes. That long range ‘try’ was foiled by a wafer-thin half-second between the foot going into touch and the put down. The wallabies were very lucky. I’ll come back to this.

A few minutes later, the intercept. They were robbed. Worst decision since the refs cost the Skins the game against Texans. Actually, it was much worse. It was a disgrace. A few minutes later, yet another piece of stupidity by foley, with his no-look passes, almost resulted in yet another interception. Not sure we’d have been good enough to come back from that.

The long range try. The Italian strode through two wallabies who made the most inept attempts at a tackle since someone tried tackling while wearing blindfolds. They would have been hauled off in an under 12 game, let alone a test. But take a closer look. Not sure who made the really poor attempt (it was in the backline so every possibility it was a prop or hooker). But the attempt by Rodda. I’m a fan of Rodda. I think he has been one of our best. But this was no tackle. It was a blatant attempt at a shoulder charge. If it connected, he was gone for at least ten. How can anyone be so stupid? Opening minutes of a test. Out in the open. And “defence coach” -  the greatest oxymoron imaginable – Nathan Grey, is bagging the kiwis, seemingly claiming some sort of weird parity? The bloke is a joke. There is no possible reason for keeping him around other than that the gibbering moron who is ‘coach’ simply won’t admit to yet another error. Apparently our last 10-12 games against the kiwis have resulted in something like 60 tries (give or take, and that is only what they have scored – no idea what we have scored but I doubt you’d need a third hand to count them). They average something like 35 points a game against us. What possible chance do we have with that? It is simply unimaginable that anyone so incompetent, short of being a politician, would keep their position.

Foley? Would he make any other national team? The Faroe Islands would find someone better.

This is compelling evidence – yes, the broken record – that both Cheika and Grey should go. After years with Foley, Grey has still been utterly unable to teach him even the basics of defence. And Cheika, to his eternal shame, keeps picking him and has not put a stop to this inane idiocy of no-look passes. Why? Why allow it? What good does it do? Does it confuse the opposition? It gave up the only try to the Italians, but could have cost us so much worse.

I know Rob uses the argument – who else? Well, that cannot be allowed to stand any longer. For either Foley or Cheika. The answer is for both – anybody. And time to prove it. Toomua has come in and proved that even as no better than an average player himself, he is streets ahead of foley. Does anyone really believe that quade would not be a better option? Cheika likes putting props at first receiver so why not just use a prop? Find a teenager. Can the girls in the women’s’ wallabies (or whatever they are called) play for the blokes? Could be no worse. But Cheika cannot bring himself to completely get rid of this dribbling wannabee. Put him in the centres. I’m no great fan of Beale but even he is Tim Horan compared with foley. God, he is awful. Twice in the Italian game, he had to turn his body to pass with his strong hand because his left is not up to it. This is a flyhalf. David Knox was better than this.

That Cheika has persisted with this condemns him as well. All this crap about we can’t get rid of him this close to a world cup? Rubbish. We did last time. We can again. (and seriously, we made the previous final pretty much by default, which seems to have convinced the gibbering ginpots that run the game that Cheika was competent – Scotland were utterly dudded by the refs which got us through to play Argentina in the semis and we stumbled past them, only to meet the obvious end). So, of course he can go.

The argument of who? Anyone. Anyone bored enough to be still reading this. A dead bloke. Me. The homeless bloke sleeping by the rubbish. A four year old. They could all do just as well, so yes, time to go.

On what planet does Tupou deserved to be dumped from the starting team, let alone the bench, for Ainsley? The guy has the potential to be a starting wallaby prop for a decade and playing the poms at Twickenham would be great experience, even if he is certain to be on the losing side. But no. But we still have hannigan (if ever something didn’t deserve a capital, it is this pretender). And beans for brains as captain. Sure, he plays well most of the time, by our now low standards, but it is obvious to Blind Freddie that he cannot captain. And after fifty tests or whatever as captain, fairly obvious, he won’t grow into it. Perhaps Cheika wants the only waste of space dumber than him as captain?

I can’t ever actually cheer for England but if they must beat us, please do it by a massive margin.

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Strangely agree that a thumping would leed to a better world cup for Aussie. Clean the decks and start to enjoy it again.

Too long Chieka has gotten away with saying "we played great in practice". Or "these are great learnings" whatever that means.   Not only does he he use the English language like a broken robot, he has much in common with our "May-bot" Teresa.  Digging your feet in, and sticking to task is only admirable if you're showing improvement. Without improvement you are intact just a spanner in the works. 

He thinks him wanting to do it is justification enough.

 

20 hours ago, Ken Gargett said:

When is enough enough?

Pocock out seemingly with little pressure to get him through fitness.   Beale and AAC suspended, due to minor code of conduct infringement!!???.  three girls back to the hotel (one being AAC Sister in Law).  Now assuming theres no planned incest on the cards, it sounds fairly innocuous to me. 

Could Chieka be mucking his hand?  and giving himself an reasonable explanation, if they get thumped? 

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/46318187

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14 hours ago, 99call said:

Strangely agree that a thumping would leed to a better world cup for Aussie. Clean the decks and start to enjoy it again.

Too long Chieka has gotten away with saying "we played great in practice". Or "these are great learnings" whatever that means.   Not only does he he use the English language like a broken robot, he has much in common with our "May-bot" Teresa.  Digging your feet in, and sticking to task is only admirable if you're showing improvement. Without improvement you are intact just a spanner in the works. 

He thinks him wanting to do it is justification enough.

 

Pocock out seemingly with little pressure to get him through fitness.   Beale and AAC suspended, due to minor code of conduct infringement!!???.  three girls back to the hotel (one being AAC Sister in Law).  Now assuming theres no planned incest on the cards, it sounds fairly innocuous to me. 

Could Chieka be mucking his hand?  and giving himself an reasonable explanation, if they get thumped? 

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/46318187

pocock would not opt out unless no choice. he really is our one world class player. 

as for the other idiots, shows how much notice they take of team rules and spirit. but what gets me is that apparently our moronic captain knew about it pre italy. didn't report it till later. so, either he was not going to report it but then got put in the position he had to or he thought it better to have those players for the italian game rather than the pommy game. which gives some insight into what they think of their chances v england. 

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On 11/23/2018 at 11:03 PM, Ken Gargett said:

v england. 

Direct quote from Cheika, (in discussing modern day rugby in the post match press conference) "everyone these days just wants the good things, without the bad,  they're like "oh my phones bust, I want a new phone". 

Yes Michael the phone IS bust, and we would like a..............new..............phone!   

 

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watched the replay. not sure why. but it did confirm that there really is nothing worse than losing to england (with apologies to any token poms). great weekend. skins lose to the cowgirls and the wallabies lose to england. i don't even have anything to fight with telstra about, to make myself feel better. what really grates is listening to the pommy commentators (yes, i know we have some shockers as well - the good thing, i thought, about the cricket going to 7 was no more slater and they go and sign him). after ten minutes, you'd swear that you must be watching the greatest rugby side to ever take the field. those two alone were enough to make one put on black for the next world cup. insufferable. 

another dismal showing. it did show how much we rely on pocock. our one strength, turnovers at the breakdown, became a weakness. i did think england got away with sealing off a few too many times but if you are dominant, you get those calls.

the absurd one is that shoulder charge by farrell on half time. on any reading of the rules, that is a penalty try and a yellow. the bloke is a serial offender and that was blatant and a shocker. nothing done. not even a penalty. if i was a player and got so much as a harsh word for a charge, i think i'd lose it after watching that. presumably that rule is now to be completely ignored. not that it would have changed things. 

after all of the tests and the training, how on earth can the scrum be such utter crap? again, why does nathan grey have a job? surely, defence coach means he is supposed to coach defence? it ain't happening. 

stay tuned next year for more of the same. 

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Point on Owen Farrell's tackling (which I cannot believe commentators haven't picked up on).   He's tackling technique appears to be A, terrible and B, cynically dangerous.      Growing up in Wigan, with his dad being a rugby league legend, and currently the most highly rated defensive coach in the world, there is zero chance Owen wouldn't of had correct tackling technique drummed into him. 

In short, he's choosing to try and perform upright 'soak up' tackles whereby, he's often bouncing off the attacking player, slowing them down for other team mates to get to, whilst he looks to get back into the defensive line as quickly as possible.  

I'm no fan of Owen Farrell, I respect him, as he can control a game, and is competitor.  but he does seem a bit of a fart in a spacesuit

I think he should of got yellow carded in this match+penalty try, and should of gotten yellow carded in the SA game.       This years reffing has being nuts, All year it's been far too heavy handed, and not in these internationals it's been way too soft!?  The games becoming intensely over complicated,  a real shame. 

I hope for your sake Ken, that they give Cheika the chop, and some how get Aussie rugby back on track. Every nations has it's own particular style, and it would be a sad loss to not see the quality of Australian rugby come back to it's best. Fingers crossed

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13 minutes ago, 99call said:

Point on Owen Farrell's tackling (which I cannot believe commentators haven't picked up on).   He's tackling technique appears to be A, terrible and B, cynically dangerous.      Growing up in Wigan, with his dad being a rugby league legend, and currently the most highly rated defensive coach in the world, there is zero chance Owen wouldn't of had correct tackling technique drummed into him. 

In short, he's choosing to try and perform upright 'soak up' tackles whereby, he's often bouncing off the attacking player, slowing them down for other team mates to get to, whilst he looks to get back into the defensive line as quickly as possible.  

I'm no fan of Owen Farrell, I respect him, as he can control a game, and is competitor.  but he does seem a bit of a fart in a spacesuit

I think he should of got yellow carded in this match+penalty try, and should of gotten yellow carded in the SA game.       This years reffing has being nuts, All year it's been far too heavy handed, and not in these internationals it's been way too soft!?  The games becoming intensely over complicated,  a real shame. 

I hope for your sake Ken, that they give Cheika the chop, and some how get Aussie rugby back on track. Every nations has it's own particular style, and it would be a sad loss to not see the quality of Australian rugby come back to it's best. Fingers crossed

with the drain of talented kids to league (and then some of those that want to go back to rugby - usually because of the money, the travelling and becaue it is easier - they end up in england like teo or the all blacks like thorn and watch for ponga), i have real doubts that rugby will ever be strong here again. at least not for a long time. the admin is incompetent in the extreme, the coaching hopeless, the players believe that they are untouchable gods instead of gibbering idiots. 

i hope someone looks into the excuse given by the ref that the runner had lowered his shoulder. as far as i understand, that is not illegal - otherwise, the runner would be penalised every time - and if so, how on earth can it be relevant to the shoulder charge by farrell? makes no sense. surely me doing something legal on a field does not give you the right (speaking in general terms, of course) to do something illegal. 

 

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I agree with the Farrell shoulder charge. Under the rules, that is a penalty try and a yellow card, as has been stated. I agree, Michael Cheika should go. No Wallabies side has lost six in a row to England.

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good article from greg growden on espn.

 

Wallabies, Rugby Australia in need of complete cultural clean-out

play

11:59 AM

Greg GrowdenESPN Rugby

Great sporting teams have at its core an excellent, brutally honest team culture. They keep success in check, don't blame others when they are occasionally overcome, respect their heritage and demand humility from those within the brethren. Big-heads are beaten down. The All Blacks are the glowing example of that. As were the Wallabies during the glory days- long, long ago.

Bad teams do everything they can to cover their tracks, blame others for their faults, develop an unnecessarily arrogant streak and look for excuses. That's all part of a poor team culture. The 2018 Wallabies are in that category.

As expected, the Wallabies' final Test appearance in a dreadful season was miserable viewing. They were completely outclassed, outcoached, outmanoeuvred, out-everything by England and could have lost by more. And so the Wallabies completed their worst season since 1958, with only four wins from 13 internationals, under Michael Cheika their sixth straight loss to England, just one win -- a substandard Spaghetti Western effort against Italy -- in a lamentable four-match northern hemisphere tour, while a head coach's success rate drops to 48 percent, and a miserly 40 percent win-rate since the last World Cup. The Wallabies are now sixth in the world, and sinking fast.

The distressing signs of decay at the core of Australian rugby have been evident for some time, but were dragged right into the public's face before the Twickenham international, with suggestions of a cover-up over why Kurtley Beale and Adam Ashley-Cooper were suddenly not in the Test line-up.

Something is inherently wrong with the Wallabies team culture when it takes its team leadership group ten days, repeat ten days, to tell Cheika they were concerned with what Ashley-Cooper and Beale had got up to on the night of the loss to Wales in Cardiff.

Wallabies coach Michael Cheika reacts to a referee decision at Twickenham David Rogers - RFU/The RFU Collection via Getty Images

Then again it is a strange team leadership group when three of the five members -- Nick Phipps, Allan Alaalatoa and Samu Kerevi -- are far from regular Test representatives. David Pocock and Michael Hooper, the other two in the group, are leaders, but the other three? Hardly.

Then it appears the story of Beale and Ashley-Cooper breaking team protocol only got out due to good old fashioned media persistence and pressure.

The Australian newspaper's experienced rugby correspondent Wayne Smith broke the story, even though he wasn't on the Wallabies tour. One of the most telling paragraphs of Smith's exclusive went: "The incident, which Cheika admits would have been covered up for a time had it not been for the questions raised by The Weekend Australian, comes at a critical moment in Cheika's coaching career."

Back in Cardiff, Cheika, who earlier in the week had come up with different reasons- primarily form - for Beale not making the Twickenham line-up, had to deny on the eve of the game he had been lying, or was involved in a cover-up.

Not a good look.

Then again, Cheika should have known Beale, a serial offender, is accustomed to killing off Wallabies coaches. After all, Beale was at the centre of Ewen McKenzie's departure.

The team goes to Twickenham, and after a conclusive defeat, Cheika took aim at the referee, complaining about Owen Farrell's shoulder charge of Izack Rodda that stopped a try from being scored.

Did this moment ruin the Wallabies' victory hopes? Far from it. But it had the desired effect of some sympathetic We Wuz Robbed-esque media yarns.

Cheika's persistent complaining about referees has clearly infiltrated the players' persona.

Wallabies coach Michael Cheika reacts to a referee decision at Twickenham David Rogers - RFU/The RFU Collection via Getty Images

During Cheika's reign, they have lacked discipline. They have constantly been guilty of silly penalties, such as Sekope Kepu picking up the ball from an offside position at the breakdown, and then looking surprised he was pinged. Does he actually know the laws?

But Cheika can't really bollock his players for upsetting the referee, when they so often see him yelling and screaming in the coach's box about decisions. Not a good look. It also sets a precedent. Good coaches don't do that. I can't ever recall Graham Henry, Steve Hansen or Joe Schmidt going berserk after a dubious decision. They remained composed. Such calm usually seeps through to the players' group.

The Wallabies antics are glaring indicators of a team management out of control, and a playing group that has lost its way.

All the Twickenham Test proved was that without David Pocock, the Wallabies are soulless. His replacement at No 8 Peter Samu was near invisible, while the team's back-row play was below Test standard. The lineout throwing was a little better, but remains a serious concern. If this was a professional dart's match, numerous Australian throws over the season would have been lodged into the back of the official scorer's head.

The Australian scrum remains inconsistent, and Bernard Foley is out of position at No 12. Israel Folau showed what he actually could do with a masterful try, but as usual immediately slipped back to cruise control. The team defence was at times embarrassing. No wonder England players started to sledge them for being 'snitches'. No one respects them anymore. Again not a good look.

This is a scrambling, forever looking-over-its-shoulder team that has lost all of its confidence and requires far more than a match day rev-up from an over-emotional coach. Good, constructive tactics are desperately required.

Ashley Western/MB Media/Getty Images

Getting out of this mess requires leadership. Rugby Australia are way out of their depth in this area. Raelene Castle is floundering, even contributing to the slump in team standards by allowing the Wallabies' pin-up boy Folau to this season repeatedly get away with inflammatory social media comments. If Folau was in an All Blacks jersey, I simply cannot see their team management allowing him to get away with that.

Then just before the Twickenham Test came the usual wishy-washy Cheika endorsement from Castle over the Beale/Ashley-Cooper bedroom farce. Soon, we will hear her say that a 50-point Wallabies defeat was because they had no luck with the game toss.

The obvious line is that 'fish rots from the head.' And that can be directed at Rugby Australia, who misguidedly believe that women's and sevens rugby -- fringe elements of the code which provide little financial return -- is the way to success.

The greater concern is that those in charge at Rugby Australia are performing more like lost tadpoles about to transform into fat, motionless toads.

There will be the obligatory tour review, and RA will undoubtedly find one easy-to-get-rid-of minor scapegoat - so that for a change it looks like they're actually doing something. It's not hard to guess who will go. Mere window dressing though.

But sadly due to RA being in its own words 'financially challenged', the real culprits in the Wallabies management who have choreographed the demise of a once magnificent national team will remain.

And that is blatantly wrong.

 

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this was something i sent to mates on a rugby email chain.

 

The one thing I can promise these idiots is that they will not get another cent from me, ever. Or the family.

We have 30 year season tickets which have a few years to run. I had long decided that they would not be renewed – the pathetic attempts by the QRU to extort more from all of the people who supported them in the days they needed it most made certain of that – and all this latest crap confirms it. I will never, under any circumstances, ever buy another ticket for any form of rugby. Ever.

The QRU first decided to add a big fee for postage (that would be a whopping fee for one envelope and when everyone objected, they made us come and collect the tickets each week if we would not pay – I think this was dropped when the poor office girls got sick of endless lawyers, accountants, doctors et al, arriving at headquarters and giving them a gobful every week).

They then tried to extort us by threatening all those who would not pay an extra yearly fee with “relocation” – sounds like the final solution – away from the agreed seats to the nosebleed section of Suncorp. so they copped various legal actions and endless hassles and eventually decided it was easier if they found a way to give those who caused them the most grief their original seats – in my case, I pointed out that the old contacts at the paper would love to hear that they were forcing my 80-year-old mother to walk up six flights of stairs if she wanted to continue to support Queensland rugby – the tickets in her name. they couldn’t reverse my relocation fast enough. Others had health issues.

And all of this was not before the bitch who runs their PR actually said to me – “did you really think that buying the tickets would be all you’d have to pay?” well, yes. It is called a contract. She could not understand that – seriously. Discussions between the PR department and myself were also ‘relocated’ to elsewhere with in the admin after I pointed out the similarities between their PR dept and Nazi concentration camp officers – she understood that.

We used to get a Test ticket. They removed that – there would have been a time that would have bothered me but I really would much rather stay at home with a rum and a cigar so just didn’t care.

And yet, in a few years, they’ll be there asking for a whopping amount of money so we can cop more of this crap.

And this from a bloke who hardly missed a Reds game for forty years when I was in the State. Who has stood on endless sidelines for the Reds and the club games and followed them even on interstate and overseas games. Now, I really don’t care if I drive the 12 minutes to the ground. And they think they’ll attract crowds? Fat chance.

If rugby Australia was on the sharemarket, you’d sell them as short as any divinity allowed. Rugby in Australia might not be dead but it won’t be long before they remove the life support. Thanks to the current idiots.

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Gday Ken - I actually think that the Wallabies have a first XV on paper which, on a good day, could beat any the top teams. Most of the players were in the 2015 WC final. (their bench is too weak to win consistently in modern day rugby imho - you need a quality first 22 - and the tight 5 is still a bit iffy)

But the coaches are not the men for the job. An over-emotional, short fuse, "everybody is out to get us - circle the wagons" type approach, has never been a recipe for long term success. Cue Cheika. A dysfunctional defence system will start losing you games you would have won at a canter. Cue Nathan Grey, defence coach for the Waratahs 2015-2017 try-leaking seasons (in spite of a decent team lineup on paper).

Who knows. Maybe they will learn from their mistakes, sort their $hit out and start winning a few games next season. But it looks very unlikely with these - "blame the other guys" - fellas at the helm. Which is a pain because guys like Folau, Kuridrani, Pocock can be a joy to watch when they're supported by a decent team.

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https://www.bbc.com/sport/rugby-union/46382937

So Australia were going to have discussions with Jake White about taking over the top job, but cancelled when it became public knowledge? Oh dear. Although things are looking bleak for the Wallabies at the moment, I am sure they will turn up in Japan and be a serious contender with or without Cheika.

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