Sport Wallabies respond to Quade's Cheika 'potshot'
Inside the relationship breakdown that cruelled the Wallabies
With the sport's most polarising figure Michael Cheika headed for the exit, what next for Australian rugby?‘‘The relationship between the CEO and the coach is incredibly important,’’ Castle had told media about 10 days earlier, on her first day in the office. ‘‘It’s about making sure that we find an engagement that works really well and that we can help each other and work closely together.
Wallabies' stars David Pocock and Michael Hooper have expressed disappointment over Quade Cooper's criticism of departed coach Michael Cheika, as the Australian side returned home from the World Cup.
Cheika has copped a tonne of criticism after the Wallabies were knocked out of the Rugby World Cup by England at the quarter-final stage. The tension escalated when he revealed he barely had a relationship with CEO Raelene Castle and chairman Cameron Clyne.
Cooper tweeted about Cheika after he resigned, writing: "If he actually cared about Aus rugby he would have done it a while ago".
Comment: Cheika's legacy? Cheapening the Wallabies jersey and playing the blame game
The Wallabies coach thought he was the team's greatest protector. But he did it more harm than good.Editor’s note: The opinions in this article are the author’s, as published by our content partner, and do not necessarily represent the views of MSN or Microsoft.
Addressing reporters at Sydney airport on Tuesday morning, Pocock defended his former coach while doing his best not to attack Cooper.
"As players we always find it disappointing when people on the outside are taking potshots, because there's a huge amount of work that's gone in and Cheik's the kind of guy who goes in to bat for his players.
"Behind the scenes, he's always wanting guys to be able to just focus on their rugby.
"You can't please everyone. Everyone's got different opinions — I've got a huge amount of time for Quade, we go way back.
"People are going to say what they want, especially when you fall short like we did.
"There's no excuses, we've just got to cop it on the chin, we weren't good enough on the night."
Wallabies captain Michael Hooper didn't seem to be too impressed by Cooper's comments.
Cheika wants next Wallabies coach to be Australian
The outgoing coach is keen for a home-grown replacement in the hot seat.Cheika returned to Sydney on Tuesday still disappointed by the Wallabies’ quarter-final exit from the Rugby World Cup, but with no regrets about standing down after five years at the helm.
"Not giving it any air," Hooper said.
"Me personally, Cheik's been amazing for me. I owe that man a lot," he added.
"The passion that he represented us, stood up for us all the time and just genuinely wanted the best for Australian rugby.
"Not just the team, not just for him being the coach of the team, but what's best for Australian rugby after he's long gone, to leave something that's positive."
Neither Hooper or Pocock, who has retired from international rugby, would be drawn on who should replace Cheika.
Two-time Super Rugby-winning coach Dave Rennie is the frontrunner, with fellow New Zealander Jamie Joseph, former Wallabies mentor Eddie Jones - who remains contracted with England for two more years - and ex-assistant coach Stephen Larkham have also been mentioned as possible candidates.
Cheika tenure crushed by England chariot .
Five years under Michael Cheika has never been boring but the Wallabies coach has had his shortcomings brutally exposed.Cheika's hopes of extending his contract beyond December 31 were skewered by a stark 40-16 Rugby World Cup quarter-final defeat.