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New coach for the OZmob


Ewen McKenzie will coach the Wallabies to the 2015 Rugby World Cup after the Australian Rugby Union released Robbie Deans from his two-year contract six months early.

Georgina Robinson, RugbyHeaven

B&I Lions coach Warren Gatland rallied behind embattled Australian counterpart Robbie Deans, highlighting the achievements of his fellow Kiwi, to no avail for the embattled coach.

It is understood the departing Reds head coach, who took the Queensland side to a Super Rugby title in 2011, will be unveiled tomorrow as Deans’s replacement.

McKenzie has seen off a powerful challenge from Brumbies coach Jake White, who was considered a strong favourite for the position just a few weeks ago.

White coached the Springboks to World Cup victory in 2007 and was responsible for leading a revival of the Brumbies.

But after Deans’ five-and-a-half-year tenure the clamour was powerful for an Australian to get the job.

McKenzie’s success at the Reds – since winning in 2011 the side has made the Super Rugby finals two years in a row – was also at the core of a strong push for his appointment.

Deans’ fate was sealed when the Wallabies lost 41-16 in the series decider against the British and Irish Lions on Saturday.

He met with Pulver in Sydney on Monday and was informed of his fate, but appeared resigned to it in the hours after the disappointing Test performance.

The 53-year-old was appointed after the 2007 World Cup and retained on a two-year contract after the 2011 tournament, where Australia fell to the All Blacks in the semi-finals.

Deans took the Wallabies from fifth spot in the world rankings to a sustained peak of second spot, before an injury-marred 2012 season saw them drop back to third place.

Under Deans the Wallabies won the 2011 Tri Nations but never won the coveted Bledisloe Cup, which New Zealand has held since 2003.

McKenzie announced in March his intention to leave the Reds and pursue a national coaching role, saying at the time: “Anyone who knows me understands I have strong coaching ambitions and, after spending nine years coaching at a Super Rugby level, I’m excited about pursuing a different role either here or overseas”.

A Melbourne-raised former town planner, he turned to rugby seriously after moving to Sydney and joining Randwick rugby club.

The Wallabies’ next Test match is against the All Blacks in Sydney on August 17 in the first match of The Rugby Championship.

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  1. From insult to injury…
    After the B/I Lions Waterloo, retreating Wallabies will get strafed by the Messerschmitt named Willie in retreat come TRC.

    Aus rugby xenophobes will rue the day they passed up on Jake White.

  2. @ Americano – spot on. They have got rid of their Welsh-connected prime minister, their South African cricket coach and now their kiwi rugby coach. A lot of people are like the writer of the article pointing to the fact that many Aussie Wallaby coaches have held onto their jobs despite far worse win/loss records. Perhaps like the demise of Jake White as Springbok coach, this has more to do with politics and administrative ineptitude. Deans was on the tightrope once he lost his backer, O’Neill.

  3. A theory circulated here in NZ is that Deans was on a hiding to nothing “because he didn’t have the cattle”, i.e. the calibre of the player base was poor in terms of gamebreakers, reserves etc. Probably also applies to the current Oz cricket mob too?

  4. Out-Wide
    That O’Neil fella was a very slippery character. Isn’t it true that he quit ARU when he came to the conclusion that his proposal to ban scrums from Union wouldn’t come to pass?
    Maybe it was something else similarily scandalous.
    I dunno.
    Can’t help you on the cricket stuff – I just don’t get it. i’m sure its me & I just need to give it a chance but they don’t show it here & I am also suspect in the value of ANYTHING a place like Pakistan is good at. They could screw up a cup of coffee over there & yet they’re good at cricket?

  5. out wide too many injuries in a very small rugby pool anyway.

    Racism really. Should have gone with Jake.

    Quade by the way is the Fox inside man, the way I was told he is on F0x’s books for insider tips.

    Same with McKenzie. Now we are going to see copycat rugby so expect more blocking, obstruction, swimming and crossing.

  6. Heard on Saturday it was metioned after the match by John Mitchell and John Robbie that AUs have more politics in sports than we think we have in SA

  7. Hey Boertje –
    That’s R2 million per year right?
    I wonder where that puts him on the pay scale for SA players.

  8. out wide – “because he didn’t have the cattle”

    Can you imagine trying to coach Cooper, O’Connor and Beale! They are out socialising every night, always on the piss, never sticking to team curfews, not pitching up for practice, etc. In fact acting just like League players. :soek:

    Deans must have been dismayed to say the least – no dedication to the team like Mac Awe, Carter, Marshall, etc.

  9. @ MPOSA 5:24. Agree Jake would have brought some no admin interference bs that seems to go on amongst the suits in Oz rugby but he was probably never in the picture. Tonight on the news in NZ we had Pulver and a guilty-looking Ewen McKenzie bragging that that they had hatched a plan behind the scenes to get rid of Deans and replace him with swarmy McKenzie 6 months ago! So the loss of the series to the Lions means sweet fanny adams. They were always going to get rid of Deans.

    @ Bunny 7:18 – that says something. Just finished reading Jake White’s book in Black and White again and I still can’t believe the ineptitiude, interference and ignorance White had to deal with from SA Rugby’s Board and Presidents council and yet he still helped SA win it’s second RWC!

    @mawm 8:20 – no the Canterbury and Crusader setup is pretty tight and behaviour like that must have been foreign to Robbie. He is accused of being soft on O’Connor but it wasn’t as if he was blessed with a multitude of replacements.

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