‘Stop whining,’ New Zealand’s Steve Hansen tells Australian counterpart Michael Cheika
Wallabies boss stands by his post-match rant as Dean Mumm is cited for foul play
Australia coach Michael Cheika continued his rant against the All Blacks on Sunday, saying he would not back down from his outburst after the New Zealanders’ record-setting victory.
And if a perceived lack of respect by the All Blacks was not bad enough for the aggrieved coach, he faced more negative news with Dean Mumm cited for foul play during Saturday’s test in Auckland.
Cheika was fuming after the All Blacks won 37-10 and refused to congratulate them on posting a world-record 18th consecutive victory.
Instead he launched into a wide-ranging tirade that took aim at the All Blacks, a newspaper cartoon, the referee, and the bugging device found in the New Zealand team room before a test in Sydney earlier this year.
He even complained about not being invited into the New Zealand dressing room for a beer after the game.
All Blacks coach Steve Hansen rejected all accusations and advised Cheika to “stop whining” but the Australian coach was not backing down.
“They asked me to make a comment about their achievement and I said I didn’t think they’d care about my comment which I think is the truth,” he said when the team returned to Sydney. “I think that’s the honest thing to say.”
He also continued to link the All Blacks to the New Zealand Herald ’s pre-game cartoon depicting him as a clown.
“That’s their go-to paper, the whole bug thing came out from there, which you know we had policemen in our offices asking our management questions about it,” Cheika said.
“That’s serious stuff to be accusing people of and it’s not true. That’s their go-to. Nothing happens without that connection so that’s my point of view. They don’t have to agree with it.”
Meanwhile, Cheika had to address the issue of Mumm being cited for an alleged incident “that met the red card threshold for foul play”, according to a New Zealand Rugby statement.
“A player must not strike an opponent with the fist or arm, including the elbow, shoulder, head or knee,” the statement said, adding the incident was in the 53rd minute but it did not identify who was supposedly hit.
The Australians might have been sour but elsewhere there was high praise for the All Blacks’ world-record winning streak, with suggestions their unbeaten run is far from over.
“The All Blacks march on, fallible for sure, but buoyed by the self-assurance greatness bestows,” wrote Paul Rees in London’s Observer.
“The best, it is hard not to suspect, is yet to come.”
London’s Telegraph noted that less than a year after becoming the first team to win back-to-back World Cups “with a much-changed line-up, Steve Hansen’s side bolstered their claim to being the greatest ever rugby team”.
Among the flood of tributes for the All Blacks’ unprecedented winning streak were tweets of congratulations from both the Irish Rugby Union and the British & Irish Lions.
— British&Irish Lions (@lionsofficial) October 22, 2016
The All Blacks need to win their next seven tests, which include two against Ireland and three against the Lions, if they are to break the outright record of 24 tests held by Cyprus who compete in the European Nations Cup division 2B.
“Great contest from both sides. Congratulations @AllBlacks on your achievement,” the Lions tweeted.
“@AllBlacks Congratulations on an incredible winning run,” said Ireland who play New Zealand in Chicago and Dublin next month.
Former All Blacks captain Sean Fitzpatrick expected the winning sequence to continue, tweeting: “I suspect there will be a few more added 2 the total by this outstanding team”.
Former Wallaby Stirling Mortlock tweeted that the All Blacks were “#toogood” while South African cricket great Allan Donald added: “Simply have to applaud the way these men play there [sic] rugby.”
Congratulations 2 @AllBlacks on the record 18 consecutive wins.I suspect there will be a few more added 2 the total by this outstanding team
— Sean Fitzpatrick (@frontrow92) October 22, 2016
Such was the All Blacks’ superior finishing that they outscored the Wallabies six tries to one despite enjoying only 35 per cent of possession and 32 per cent of territory.
“That said, we saw enough of the real All Blacks to know that this side are still way ahead of the rest of the world and that they will continue to move upwards,” wrote Steve James in London’s Telegraph.
“Their fitness in the last quarter yet again proved irresistible.”
In Sydney’s Daily Telegraph Jamie Pandaram referred to the “extraordinarily ugly aftermath” to the test which saw trans-Tasman relations plunge.
“Australian coach Michael Cheika claimed the Kiwis don’t respect them while rival Steve Hansen told him not to get ‘sulky’,” Pandaram wrote.