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19.12.21

RUGBY AUSTRALIA TAKES STEP IN RIGHT DIRECTION

Rugby Australia have taken the belated but correct step forward with the sacking of Scott Johnson.

But they have not gone far enough in their restructure of elite rugby, and the so-called High-Performance Unit.

Johnson has always sought the role of ‘kingmaker’.

He has seen himself as the backroom boss, conveniently operating free from the responsibility of coaching.

The saying goes all care and no responsibility, but in Johnson’s case, it was all power, big paycheque, and no responsibility.

Not a bad gig.

In this day and age, there is no room or need for a Director of Rugby and a Head Coach.

Supporters and administrators demand accountability.

They want to know exactly who is responsible for the team and its performances.

Scott Johnson could not cut the mustard as an International Head Coach.

His coaching record with Scotland was 5 wins from 16 tests, a winning percentage of 30.

Sadly, his record as a Director of Rugby is on a par with his coaching record.

He made enemies with player agents and, as a consequence, failed to get Quade Cooper, Samu Kerevi and Sean McMahon on the Spring Tour of the UK.

In short, he failed to deliver the one thing he was supposed to deliver – a strong Wallaby line-up.

Rugby is better off with his going.

Australian Rugby’s “invisible man” will lurk in the shadows no more.

So, well done to Rugby Australia for this initiative, but it should have happened long ago.

Can they now explain their decision to switch coaches in the Sevens programs?

Tim Walsh and John Manenti have simply changed horses.

Walsh now takes over the Women’s Sevens from Manenti, and Manenti takes over the Men’s, from Walsh.

What the hell is going on?

Both our Men’s and Women’s teams failed miserably at the Tokyo Olympics; on top of that, the Men’s team misbehaved on the plane on the way home.

Surely a fresh start, with new coaches, would’ve been a better way forward.

And there is plenty of coaching talent around.

But the age old question raises its head, who chooses the coaches; and what success have they had at coaching?

It is a simple truth.

You can’t be successful on the field if things are in a shambles off it.

Sadly, Rugby Australia has a lot of work to do.