An email enclosing the combined Wallaby team selections made by their Super Rugby franchise head coaches (bar Michael Foley who did not advise on his team selection) has been leaked to the media.
It seems that the ever decisive and confident (pfffft) Robbie Deans has asked each of Australia’s leading coaches to email him a Wallaby team sheet and in essence do his job for him. Deans then replied to the coaches with a “combined squad” compiled from each of their selections to gain their approval.
All this before Sunday’s announcement of the Wallaby squad, who will have the honour of facing the British and Irish Lions next month.
It seems that despite their off-field shananigans, both Quade Cooper and Kurtley Beale have been included in the “brains trust’s” comibined selections. Beale has recently checked himself into a rehabilitation clinic after alcohol fueled fights with team mates, locals, and just about anyone who looks at his pug-like face. Cooper was involved in a widely reported quarrel with the ARU last year and his foolishness has forced him out of the current Wallaby fold entirely.
Force coach, Michael Foley (ironically the only coach not involved) has been extremely outspoken on the incident.
“I feel more for the players that have to read that sort of thing in the media and then try and second guess things when all they should be thinking about right now is how they’re going to play,” Foley told the Australian Associated Press.
“I’ve been on the other side of the fence as a player aspiring to try and make a Lions series, which is a once in a lifetime chance. I think this sort of media speculation on the eve of the squad being announced could be a potential distraction. I hope it’s not for the players, because the play across Australia this year has been significantly better than what it was last year.”
Foley said the leak wouldn’t deter him from sharing his thoughts with the Australian Rugby Union in the future.
“I think the dialogue between the national head coach and the head coaches of the states should be open, That dialogue is extremely important and wouldn’t make me reluctant in the future. Robbie sent us an Email the other night apologising for the fact that he had been made aware that it was going to be publicised the next day. We just move on. I don’t know if a witch hunt helps anybody, but I would like to know where it came from.” Foley said.
The British and Irish Lions tour kicks off on the 1st of June against the Barbarians in Hong Kong and the first of the three tests start on 22nd of June.
The Ausie franchises coaches team:
1. Ben Robinson
2. Stephen Moore
3. Ben Alexander
4. James Horwill
5. Rob Simmons
6. Scott Higginbotham
7. Liam Gill
8. Wycliff Palu
9. Will Genia
10. James O’Connor
11. Digby Ioane
12. Christian Lealifano
13. Adam Ashley-Cooper
14. Dom Shipperley
15. Jesse Mogg
16. Tatafu Polota Nau
17. Sekope Kepu
18. Paddy Ryan
19. Hugh McManiman
20. Ben Mowen
21. Michael Hooper
22. Nic White
23. Kurtley Beale
Matt Toomua, Ben Tapuai, Quade Cooper, Isreal Folau
Let us know what your Wallaby Squad would be in the comment section below!