Chris Rattue is a sports columnist for the New Zealand Herald.

Chris Rattue: Stop whining Michael Cheika, you look like a fool

Stop whining Michael Cheika, and get on with a proper game plan. At the moment, you are coming across like a fool.

Wallaby coach Cheika can moan all he likes. He might even have a very minor point or two. But he's barking up the wrong tree, and barking mad if he thinks he's on a productive track.

Yes, maybe at a pinch it's difficult to work out why Owen Franks - who had a magnificent test in Wellington - won't at least face a hearing for raking his hand across the face of Kane Douglas.

But there was also Cheika's claim that the All Black coach Steve Hansen had a rogue meeting with referee Romain Poite - the All Blacks don't bother meeting the referees anymore according to Hansen.

And then Cheika dug deep into his bag of sad tricks, claiming that his poor captain Stephen Moore gets treated in an offhand way by referees. Oh dear. Pass the tissues.

Cheika launched a load of red herrings into the gulf between the two sides, and looked out of his depth in the process. It made two horrible defeats even more cringe-inducing.

Watching an ineffective forward like Scott Fardy - who isn't good enough to lace the boots of the silent destroyer Jerome Kaino on this showing - yapping away is embarrassing. Less talk, more action Australia.

Cheika's gripes have got nothing to do with why his team is getting smashed. His players aren't good enough and his coaching sucks if the lineouts are anything to go by. Some selections look like desperate rolls of the dice. His words are hot air, a smoke screen.

The Wallabies are getting belted because, individually, they aren't good enough. It's that simple. Yes, Australia made the World Cup final last year. But they got smashed in that too.

The only player who might make a combined All Blacks-Wallabies starting lineup is Israel Folau, a league product. Even the warhorse Moore would dip out - he's in horrible form to the point that Cheika is surely faced with deciding whether to drop his captain and spin the Wallaby leadership roundabout again.

Some of the Aussies would struggle to get much time in New Zealand Super Rugby teams.

The Aussies have been rubbish, and it is sad to see. New Zealand likes to win, loves to win, but the Bledisloe Cup contest is losing its lustre. The first test was exhilarating, but watching a virtual replay and the whole inevitability of it all became tedious given the All Blacks' dominance over many, many seasons.

Australia didn't create one decent try scoring chance in the second test until it was far too late. Even then, they blew it.

Their forwards are lazy and lack aggression. Skills wise they are streets behind. Will Skelton should be a dominant forward in world rugby by now, but the giant is apparently only good for a fourth quarter trot.

Recalled No. 10 Quade Cooper belongs to a bygone era and went AWOL for long periods. The long line of scintillating and often history making Australian backs has come to a shuddering halt.

Cheika might be talking some sense if his team was competitive. Go away Cheika, and make more noise in your own backyard.

- NZ Herald

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