ABC Grandstand – Australian Rugby 2014 review

The Waratahs celebrate their Super Rugby championship win in Sydney on Saturday night. Image: ABC Grandstand

The Waratahs celebrate their Super Rugby championship win. Image: ABC Grandstand

ABC Grandstand: Here’s the clip of the Year in Review show I did with Andrew Mayes on New Year’s Eve for Grandstand Breakfast.

My tweet last night of McKenzie's final poignant walk as Wallabies coach went viral, and is still going...

My tweet of McKenzie’s final poignant walk as Wallabies coach went viral…

Over the course of half an hour, we covered all the highs and lows of Australian Rugby in 2014, including the various Super Rugby seasons for the five franchises, culminating in the Waratahs cracking their maiden title.

And then, after the chat was going so well (and after the musical stylings of Vance Joy), we had to get in the Wallabies and, well… we all know how that finished up. It’s all in there: Kurtley Beale, Ewen McKenzie, Michael Cheika… the lot. It’s been a big year.

 

Another @GAGR Podcast appearance: Cheik mate for the Wallabies

So much for annual appearances on the Green and Gold Rugby podcast, where after a rather traumatic week for Australian rugby, I’ve earned a second guernsey in a month. It may mean I’m not on again until the 2019 Rugby World Cup, though.

A really enjoyable chat with Hugh Cavill and Will McDougall where we cover off the appointment of Michael Cheika as Wallabies coach, the Ewen McKenzie legacy, a narrowing of the focus now onto Bill Pulver and ARU management of this whole debacle, the Spring Tour squad, and even a quick look at the NRC Semis this weekend.

It’s been that big a week in Australian rugby…

ABC Grandstand: a mess of ARU proportions

Ewen McKenzie during Saturday night’s shock press conference, where he announced his immediate resignation as Wallabies coach. Image: ABC Grandstand

ABC Grandstand Digital: An early start for me this morning, with Francis Leach inviting Tim Gavel and myself along for an early morning round-table on the current mess gripping the Wallabies, following the shock departure of Ewen McKenzie on Saturday night.

With the focus now on who can possibly take over the Wallabies coaching job in such a short space of time (the squad departs for Europe on Friday morning), the focus will also start turning toward ARU CEO Bill Pulver, and what has gone down in Australian rugby on his watch.

It’s fair to say this mess is a long way from over…

 

ABC Grandstand: Wallabies’ one-point loss now a distant afterthought

My tweet last night of McKenzie's final poignant walk as Wallabies coach went viral, and is still going...

My tweet last night of McKenzie’s final poignant walk as Wallabies coach went viral, and is still going…

ABC Grandstand Digital: On Grandstand Breakfast this morning, Andrew Mayes and I tried to get our heads around Ewen McKenzie’s shock resignation as Wallabies’ coach last night in Brisbane.

After sitting through a run-of-the-mill press conference, McKenzie then stunned Australian rugby by stating that at 10am yesterday, he had advised CEO Bill Pulver and the Australian Rugby Union board that win, lose, or draw, he would be stepping down post-match. “You can take it up with Bill,” McKenzie said, as he left the room.

It was then followed by Pulver’s extraordinary pointing the finger of blame toward the media and then the rugby public! Never mind that ARU mismanagement has presided over all of this, Bill…

Of course, it’s quickly been forgotten that the Wallabies suffered a heart-breaking last minute loss to the All Blacks, in arguably their best performance of the year. Sadly, the performance has been brushed aside.