Sport

Deans has destroyed Australian rugby: Campese

Robbie Deans
Robbie Deans Trevor Veale/Coffs Coast Advocat

IF Robbie Deans was a cricketer, he would play with the straightest of bats and would occupy the crease like former England openers Geoff Boycott and Chris Tavare.

His not-so flamboyant style was lambasted this week by former Wallabies winger David Campese.

Campese, whose style would have been more like a David Warner or Chris Gayle had he been a cricketer, told the London Daily Telegraph: "Deans has destroyed Australian rugby and I want him to go .....he's the worst thing that has ever happened to Australian rugby."

Any other coach might have taken a swipe at the outspoken Campese, but Deans just played the words straight back down the pitch, saying: "It's great David is passionate about the game still but I really don't want to comment further.

"People are entitled to their opinion. As I've said many times before.

"It's part of the territory."

Deans was also straight when it came to what the Wallabies were concentrating on ahead of the clash with old rival England tomorrow morning (AEST) at Twickenham.

Deans said while no one within the playing group was shying away from the disappointment of last week's 33-6 defeat against France, no one was looking backwards and getting bogged down with negatives.

"No one enjoys that," he said.

"The team's also shown a lot of character along the way and that's where last week's performance was out of character, inexcusable.

"We've got to get on with it and address it..

"The key focus has been to take the meaning from it, and put that learning into practice for this week, both through our preparation and then on to the game itself."

The Wallabies make four changes from last week - two up forward and two in the backline.

Fullback Berrick Barnes and winger Digby Ioane return, while second-rower Sitaleki Timani and tighthead prop Ben Alexander also resume.

After starting last weekend against France, Harris and Kepu have been named among Australia's eight reserves.

Injury has once again played a hand in the selection, with McCabe (neck), Douglas (knee) and flanker David Pocock (calf strain) all ruled out of the equation due to fitness concerns.

Ioane has not played for the Wallabies since scoring in the 25-19 win over Argentina at Rosario.

The powerful winger has been sidelined from the two matches since by a knee injury, resuming full contact training last week in Paris.

Alexander also has not featured since the game in South America due to a wrist problem.

Australia: Berrick Barnes, Digby Ioane, Adam Ashley-Cooper, Ben Tapuai, Nick Cummins, Kurtley Beale, Nick Phipps, Benn Robinson, Tatafu Polota Nau, Ben Alexander, Sitaleki Timani, Nathan Sharpe (captain), Dave Dennis, Michael Hooper, Wycliff Palu.

Replacements: Stephen Moore, James Slipper, Sekope Kepu, Radike Samo, Liam Gill, Brett Sheehan, Mike Harris, Drew Mitchell

Topics:  robbie deans, rugby union, wallabies


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