Wallabies deserve best coach, but let's get through Cup first

By STEVE MANNING

I CAN'T understand why the rugby union fraternity is kicking up such a fuss over who should be the next coach of the Wallabies.

There seems to be plenty of noise coming from former players such as Nick Farr-Jones and Greg Martin at a time when our attention should be on how the national team will go at the Rugby World Cup in France next month.

The code really doesn't need any media which draws attention away from the "big prize" and Martin and co should allow the Australian Rugby Union to look at the matter once the Cup is finished and John 'Knuckles' Connolly hangs up his boots as national coach.

Once that is done, the ARU should go after the best coach available, and for my money that is Kiwi Robbie Deans.

Deans has shown his ability as a coach through his outstanding record with the Canterbury Crusaders, taking them to four Super titles and six finals.

The fact that he comes from across "the ditch" has some, like Martin, saying the ARU should overlook him for a home-grown product.

Sadly if you look at how the Aussie teams went in this year's Super 14 competition, there isn't that much to crow about. Even the success of the Western Force this year has been due to another Kiwi, John Mitchell.

Because we are in a very professional era, sporting bodies are looking to get the best in the business to coach them, regardless of where they come from take a look at soccer.

If it is good enough for the Socceroos, it should surely be good enough for the Wallabies!

q.q.q." THE Gold Coast Titans continue to show plenty of maturity both on and off the field with the extension of head coach John Cartwright's contract through to 2011.

Cartwright continues to impress by keeping the Titans on track for a finals appearance despite the club having to deal with a huge injury toll.

The extension also shows the club is after some stability in its coaching department, which in turns creates a stable atmosphere among the players.

You just have to look at what %is happening to Newcastle to see the importance of having a harmonious relationship occurring %between coaches and players.

It also shows that the Titans pride themselves in the loyalty stakes.

Carty is a senior coach in the making, and remember this is only his first year at the helm of an NRL side.

He has obviously taken notes from his time at the Roosters, and with the security of a longer contract, he will be around to see the Titans develop a brand of football which will not only be entertaining to the fans but also produce results on the field.

FINALLY, as much as I deplore the action of Bulldogs Brad Morrin for biting Tamana Tahu, I must also give him his dues for standing up and copping the punishment on the chin.

Morrin knew he had done the wrong thing, publicly admitting to it and apologising to Tahu and then accepting the eight-week suspension without bleating about it in the media.

He didn't make any excuses, and that may be an example for other players to follow if you are guilty of an infringement, cop it sweet.

Perhaps the Bulldogs should give some of their players a bone to chew on before they take the field in future!



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