5 Dec, 14:49
The Ireland U19 squad to face Australia Schools at Ravenhill on Saturday 14th December has been announced.
Today's edition of The New Zealand Herald carries the following article on the continuing disharmony in the Wallaby camp.
Bloodletting continues after the Wallabies' historic loss to England, with captain George Gregan under fire for deserting his team-mates on the eve of last weekend's test in Melbourne.
Gregan left the team hotel on Friday to stay at the Crown Casino several kilometres away with his wife, a decision critics say could have undermined team unity.
Australian Rugby Union general manager John O'Neill said team protocols may be reviewed, although coach Eddie Jones described Gregan's stay away as a non-issue.
Under present policy, Wallabies were free to leave the team hotel to be with their wives or partners, who were also allowed to stay in the team hotel the night before a game. Partners and children were also allowed to stay with the team when they were in camp at a Coffs Harbour retreat on the northern New South Wales coast.
Former Wallabies expressed surprise that Gregan was not with his players on the eve of the test. Prop and television commentator Chris Handy said Gregan should have stayed with the team, and his decision not to was indicative of how the Wallabies were performing this season.
"In a perfect world it should not matter what they do the night before the game as long as they come out on the day as though they are totally focused. I just think it doesn't appear from how they played the past three games that their minds are totally on the job.
"They say they are together for 'X' number of days, but so what? They are paid to do so. I think it's time to refocus a little bit and instead of having the players run the agenda, have the management running it," Handy said.
Former captain and now Queensland coach Andrew Slack said although Gregan's actions adhered to team rules, "it is not necessarily the way some teams would be run. Before a test there is a good argument the blokes should be with the team."
Gregan's decision also met with general disapproval from other Australian sports bodies. Members of the Australian Cricket Board, Netball Australia and the Australian Rugby League said they would not let captains lodge separately.
All Blacks' wives and partners do not stay in the team hotel before matches. The captain must also stay with the team.
(The New Zealand Herald).