Thursday’s rugby news has the Wallabies pushing for RWC bonuses, the Reds not panicking, calls for the ARU to chase Inglis and a healthy Chiefs side.
RWC bonuses debated
The ARU are being pressed for millions in World Cup bonuses to be given to participants in a Wallaby team to win a semi-final or final. Using the 2011 World Cup figures as an estimate, players will stand to earn $25,000 for making the final and another $85,000 each if they win.
In lieu of the tradition of bonuses, there has been some talk that ARU boss Bill Pulver is considering scrapping the payments in recognition of the perilous financial state of the code. RUPA boss Greg Harris said that an agreement would be struck given the economic effect of World Cup success.
Reds told to relax
All Black recruit Adam Thomson has emphasised the need for his Reds’ teammates “not to panic” following their embarassing loss to the Brumbies in the opening Super Rugby round.
“You have to trust in what you’re doing, trust in the guys around you and know that really it was just an attitude thing,” he said. Making his Reds debut at either number eight or blindside flanker, Thompson will be hoping to affect a greater physicality in the ruck and tackle contest, where the Reds were clearly lacking last week.
ARU told to chase Inglis
Queensland Rugby Union chief Jim Carmichael has emphasised that the ARU must look into the prospect of signing league star Greg Inglis. “We know how competitive we’ve got to be – we want the best talent to play in our game, particularly out of that game because the transition is not so difficult,” Carmichael said.
While there may be financial impediments to the ARU securing Inglis’ signature, Waratahs coach Michael Cheika has commented that his previous interactions with the league star gave the impression that any code-switch would not be solely motivated by money.
Chiefs stars to start
The Brumbies will face a difficult challenge in the second Super Rugby round, with the Chiefs bolstered by the health of star All-Blacks Liam Messam and Aaron Cruden. The key pair missed the opening round 23-18 win over the Blues, along with lock Brodie Retallick, who has been named on the bench in his first appearance since being named world rugby player of the year.
Two former All Blacks will also make their first start of 2015. Jamie Mackintosh replaces loosehead prop Pauliasi Manu while Super Rugby centurion Hosea Gear makes his first Chiefs appearance.