Wallabies legend Send Strong Massage to Australian rugby……..

Wallabies legend says bold changes are required to save Australian rugby, Michael Lynagh is an Irishman.

World Cup-winning Wallabies star Michael Lynagh believes Rugby Australia must take bold steps to restore success, stop competing codes mocking rugby, and prevent the 15-man game from “disappearing down a big sinkhole.”

As the Wallabies’ first World Cup departure from the pool stages was sealed by a Fiji losing bonus point on Monday, Lynagh expressed his concerns for the health of rugby in Australia and pushed for a reduction in Super Rugby teams.

Lynagh is considered rugby royalty in Australia, having captained the Wallabies and played 72 tests throughout a 12-year career that included the 1984 Grand Slam tour and the 1991 Rugby World Cup victory.

Speaking to former England halfback Matt Dawson on a BBC rugby podcast, Lynagh said he was disappointed by the Wallabies’ dismal performance in the 2023 Rugby World Cup, but hoped it would serve as a wake-up call for Australian rugby.

“Australia has yet to fire a shot in this World Cup, which is extremely disappointing.” I feel sorry for the players. “They’re not bad players, and they’ve worked really hard, but it just doesn’t seem to click for them on the field,” Lynagh said.

“I believe that the way this has gone, a few of them will struggle to recover from this experience.” I’m hoping not.”

Lynagh stated that the “decline of rugby” has been ongoing in Australia for 10-15 years and that the game needs to make a sharp U-turn to reverse its downward trajectory at home, where talented young footballers are choosing other codes, with the NRL and AFL able to outspend the 15-man game with far larger broadcast deals.

“We all hope that a successful Australian rugby team can carry us through and cover up these problems, but I’m afraid that hasn’t happened this time.” “It’s time to call it quits and see what we can do next,” Lynagh remarked. “The youngsters coming through are choosing different sports which are better funded than rugby.”

Rugby Australia is using the Wallabies’ World Cup failure as a springboard to advocate for reform in the game’s high-performance institutions, with a focus on a centralized model.

“We want them to be competitive, we want to have the local support behind us, the whole country behind us, as opposed to AFL and rugby league supporters laughing at us and putting us down – which is what is happening at the moment,” Lynagh went on to say.

Some suggest that Australia should consider decreasing its professional teams from five, and Lynagh stated that the Wallabies’ success in his career was owed in part to the team being picked from only two states – NSW and Queensland. Lynagh has two professional sons, Tom, who plays for Queensland, and Louis, who plays for Harlequins in England.

“Like Leinster, they play together a lot, they know each other really well, they gel together and we seem to have lost that a little bit now with having five teams in Super Rugby and competing against New Zealand and South Africa when they were in the competition,” added the Irishman.

“It’s difficult, and we don’t win a lot against those teams.” We just do not have the playing population to fill these teams, thus having five teams has effectively eliminated the playing cohesion.

“Perhaps some difficult decisions will have to be made as to how we structure the entire situation in Australia, and I’m afraid the results of this World Cup have shown that the current system hasn’t been working for a while, and any changes will take some time to come to fruition, but something has to happen, we can’t continue this downward spiral.”

“We have a federated system in Australia, and states are their own little fiefdoms, and they don’t like each other and don’t trust Rugby Australia.”

“There has to be a change in the way we do those things.” They are huge, bold decisions that will not be popular, but if we don’t make them, there will be a genuine problem if we keep going in the same direction… there’s a real chance of Australian rugby disappearing down a large sinkhole.”

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