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Jake: ARU wanted an Aussie

  • 09 Jul 2013

Jake White says being a South African counted against him when it came to the appointment of the new Wallabies coach.

The Australian Rugby Union on Tuesday officially replaced Robbie Deans with former Wallabies prop and Reds director of rugby Ewen McKenzie.

White said it wasn’t just a perception that McKenzie got the nod over him because of his Australian heritage.

‘It’s a fact,' he told The Canberra Times. 'It just happened. You fired the cricket coach [South African Mickey Arthur], put an Aussie in, fired the rugby coach [New Zealander Deans] and put an Aussie in. South Africa pick a South African, Kiwis pick Kiwis, England pick English people to pick the team. [Australia have] tried foreigners and I appreciate that. That doesn’t mean that I have to agree or disagree with it. That’s the nature of the game we’re in.

'The ARU asked a while ago if I would be interested [in coaching the Wallabies]; I’ve always been interested in returning to international rugby,’ White added. 'It hasn’t panned out, they’ve gone for Ewen and that’s fantastic. He’s got a fantastic record and I wish him all the best. My job is to make sure the Brumbies get to a better place, everyone knows that. I’ve got a Brumbies job.

‘It’s not so much disappointment, what’s nice is I can get on with it now. There’s been a lot of speculation and anticipation ... the decision is made and that gives us clarity. The players know now who the coach is and who’s going to the World Cup.'

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