Michael Cheika must be axed as Wallabies coach…right now. That's the opinion of senior rugby journalist Greg Growden following Saturday's Bledisloe Cup defeat to the All Blacks.
Writing a column for ESPN's Scrum.com, Growden says that now's the time for Rugby Australia to get rid of Cheika as coach, to give a replacement time to plan ahead of next year's World Cup.
"Drastic action is required because Cheika's Wallabies are going absolutely nowhere, sending Australian rugby into a frightening nose-dive," Growden writes.
Growden suggests that Rugby Australia look at hiring Ireland's Joe Schmidt or even taking the drastic measure and get a league coaching great like Wayne Bennett or Craig Bellamy to take the helm.
"Cheika must pay the price for a team whose appalling skill level makes a mockery of the professional footballer tag, and arrogant, holier-than-thou attitude does not warrant any respect from those sick and tired of a pedestrian outfit who constantly makes fools of themselves in the big games," Growden adds.
Cheika, who guided the Wallabies to the 2015 World Cup final, is signed on until next year's World Cup in Japan.
He took over as Wallabies head coach at the end of 2014. The side claimed the Rugby Championship title the following year before reaching the World Cup final for the first time since 2003.
Following Saturday's 38-13 defeat in Sydney, the Wallabies have played 50 tests under Cheika and have a 53% winning percentage with eight of their 22 defeats coming against the All Blacks.