Cheika to stick with running rugby

2016-06-22 15:00
Wallaby coach Michael Cheika (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Wallabies coach Michael Cheika intends sticking firmly to his running rugby policy despite Australia's poor start to the season.

Cheika will remain committed to the running game and says he has the shoulders and chin to cop the knocks if the losses continue.

Australia's charge to last year's World Cup final and Cheika's desire to play a ball in hand game earned him enormous support.

However, the 2016 season has started with back-to-back losses to England, with Australia looking short of creativity in the second Test despite having enormous amounts of possession.

"When I sit back and look at the way the games have panned out, there's a couple of things that are clear," Cheika said on Tuesday.

"One, we are going to continue to play running footy. That's something that we want to do. It's part of how we play.

"And we obviously have to improve the quality so that we can do it consistently.

"Because otherwise you leave yourselves open to the games we have had where we've played most of the footy and we've ended up on the other side of the scoreboard.

"That can happen once every now and then that situation and I know you've got more room for that maybe in a provincial or club team.

"But it depends if I'm just coaching to keep my job or if I'm coaching to have Australian rugby play the type of football that we want to play and go through the difficult bits sometimes when that happens and stick at it. That's what I'm committed to.

"A few losses and all that stuff happens, but I feel like I've got big enough shoulders to carry that."

Cheika admitted Australia might just have gone away from their style.

"Everyone has their style and maybe we went away from ours and it's a matter of rebuilding that," he added

"I don't think, I know, that's what people in this country want to see. They want to see us play footy.

"Sometimes it doesn't go the right way. So what do you do, panic and do something different just to have a win?

"I'm not like that. I've got bigger aspirations than that and sometimes you've got to take a knock on the chin."

Cheika was also philosophical about the news Australian rugby league legend Andrew Johns spent time on Monday working with England.

"That's his choice. It's not going to make me change my opinion of him as a footballer, one of the greats in footy," he said.

"If he wants to go and coach England for a day or two, or forever, that's his business.

"Look, Glen Ella, one of our greats, is coaching there. That's the way it is nowadays."

Read more on:    wallabies  |  michael cheika  |  rugby


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