Rennie slams NZ Rugby's Bledisloe Cup demands
NEWS: Incoming Wallabies head coach Dave Rennie has thrown what could be a potential spanner in the works regarding Australia’s participation in the first two Bledisloe Cup Tests.
It was decided on Friday to hold the Rugby Championship in its entirety in Australia, which did not go down well with NZ Rugby who felt they were the better choice of venue. To appease them it was then arranged that the first two Bledisloe Tests would be held in the land of the long white cloud.
However, NZ Rugby have now pushed for the first Test to be played on the weekend of October 10 which will force the Wallabies to have just a single week to prepare for what would arguably be the biggest game of their season and this after two weeks in quarantine on arrival in New Zealand.
This proposal hasn’t exactly sat well with Rennie and he’s adamant that he will not allow his team to play under those circumstances.
“NZ Rugby’s got an expectation that we jump on a plane the day after the Super Rugby final,” Rennie says. “Have two weeks in quarantine, where we can’t prepare as a team, and then play a test seven days later.
“Under those quarantine arrangements, I can assure we won’t be playing a Test in New Zealand that weekend.”
By playing the first Bledisloe test on October 10 it would give the Wallabies just one week to prepare as a full squad, given that New Zealand’s quarantine rules only allow “bubbles” of 15 and 25.
“That’s just unacceptable and, like I said, we won’t be playing a Test under those conditions,” Rennie adds.
Rugby Australia has now weighed in on this and proposed that the earliest date they’d be willing to play is October 17…and they’re non-negotiable on this.
To take this a step further Rennie is of the opinion that it would be a lot fairer to play these Tests in Australia
“If New Zealand came over here, both sides going into a bubble for two weeks… hopefully they’re still up for negotiation.”
It seems that there’s still going to be a fair amount of arbitration before an agreement is reached in this matter