'Two good performances doesn't make up for some bad years'
There is now a reminder in ink for those who need it.
But Samu Kerevi says the Wallabies have got the message loud and clear ahead of Saturday’s Rugby Championship Test against Argentina.
“ETW” is inscribed on the body of returning back row forward Sean McMahon in a nod to his “earn the weekend” mentality.
He is pushing for a berth against Los Pumas in Townsville alongside Kerevi, the Japan-based pair beneficiaries of Rugby Australia’s relaxing of the Giteau Law.
“Oh he’s very mad,” Kerevi told Big Sports Breakfast of the highly competitive McMahon.
“He has a saying ‘ETW’, has it tattooed. He understands the amount of work that has to be put to earn a couple of orange juices at the end of the week.
“He doesn’t care what jersey he has on or who you are.
“He’s kind of like a raging bull; awesome to have on the team, but you’d never want to play against him.”
McMahon last played for Australia in 2017 and has watched as part of the extended squad for the last fortnight as the side twice dismantled world champions, South Africa.
Their first back-to-back wins since 2019 pushed them from seventh to third in the world.
But with consecutive Tests against Argentina followed by a European spring tour that includes a clash with Japan, the Wallabies aren’t getting complacent.
“Two good performances doesn’t make up for a couple of years of bad ones,” Wallabies scrumhalf Nic White said.
“A lot of hard work went into those two [wins], but if we think that’s going to set up another win we’re dreaming.
“There’s no short memories. We did have two draws last year [against Argentina]. We’re going to have to be at our best.”
A win on Saturday would be the side’s first three-game run since they won four in a row as part of a seven-game unbeaten stretch in 2017.
That was also the last time flyhalf Quade Cooper was marshalling the side, the No.10’s shock recall this month proving a masterstroke from coach Dave Rennie.
Kerevi said Cooper’s matured approach alongside 100-plus Test veterans Michael Hooper and James Slipper was permeating through an otherwise youthful squad.
“A guy like Quade, who’s played over 70 Tests, has had had a lot of growth in that area and for him it’s about staying at that same arousal level,” Kerevi said.
“It is that mental battle; [whether] winning or losing. Playing at that mid-level, understand we’re not trying to fire up for a ‘big’ game and not for a ‘small’ game.
“We have to come with the same preparation.”