Cheika s classy response to viral rugby fan s criticism
Cheika's classy response to viral rugby fan's criticism

Wallabies coach Michael Cheika admits the supporter whose social media critique of the team went viral rose some relevant issues and said he shared the same emotions.

Cheika spoke to the fan, Jack Quigley, over the phone on Monday after his Facebook post slamming the Wallabies for a lack of passion following their defeat to Scotland on the weekend attracted more than 40,000 likes and nearly 5000 shares.

Cheika said he had also stuck the post on the walls of Ballymore, where the team is training ahead of Saturday's Test against Italy at Suncorp Stadium.

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"I think that's important, that you talk to the fans," Cheika told reporters on Monday.

"I don't think it's too far away from what some of us were feeling as well.

"When we come out to pressers and say we want to make the fans proud it's not lip service, we do.

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"We're not perfect at it sometimes."

While he disagreed with some of the detail, particularly accusations that the players lacked passion and pointed criticism of Bernard Foley's goakicking, Cheika said it had clearly struck a chord.

The Wallabies copped plenty of flak for their abject defeat to Scotland but none more brutally than from Quigley.

"When I was a kid - hell, even now, I would've given my left nut just to pull on a Wallabies jumper, but when I see you guys run out, I feel like you don't care," the post read.

"I KNOW you don't care, because it shows. And don't tell me I'm wrong. Don't say that you DO care, because my response is that you don't care ENOUGH! CLEARLY!"

Quigley's post has received thousands of 'likes'. Pic: Facebook

Exasperated coach Michael Cheika is expected to wield the axe after the Wallabies' demoralising loss to Scotland.

Accusing his team of being physically and mentally off the pace, Cheika singled out captain Michael Hooper, fullback Israel Folau and rookie inside centre Karmichael Hunt as among the few to have performed to Test standard.

Quigley, the rugby tragic and self-confessed "pleb" from Lismore in northern NSW, agreed, saying it was unfathomable that the best rugby players in the country couldn't master the basic skills.

"You're quite literally hurting people with your lack of application to your jobs," Quigley said.

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"The Wallabies attitude towards the basic skills is unacceptable. A culture of blame-avoidance has been allowed to fester.

"The Wallabies attitude towards goal kicking of "hopefully he kicks it" is simply not gonna cut it.

"I'd suggest an attitude of 'Bernard, it's literally your full time job, perhaps you should stay back a few minutes after training and practice until you don't miss the goals any more'.

"The attitude towards the set piece of 'hopefully TPN/Stephen throws it to the guy we've lifted' is simply not gonna cut it. I'd suggest 'Don't practice until you get it right, practice until you can't get it wrong'.

"If the forwards aren't in at 8am tomorrow morning working on set piece, something is wrong.

"If the halves aren't in at 8am tomorrow morning working on passing the ball to the chest of the guy they're trying to pass it to, something is wrong.

"If Bernard isn't in at 8am tomorrow working on kicking the ball through the god damn posts, something is wrong."

Quigley ended the marathon rant by pleading for a fraction of the players' time, so he could address the Wallabies with his concerns and those of other like-minded Australian rugby fans.

"Give me 15 minutes. That's all I want. To look these guys in the eye and tell them WHAT IT MEANS to be a rugby fan in this country. Because they don't know. They're not fans. They're players and coaches. That's different. They don't know."

with AAP

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