Australia coach Dave Rennie says the Wallabies would not use the All Blacks’ perceived disrespect as motivation for the upcoming Perth Test, drawing a line under a scheduling row that erupted between the rugby powers last week.
Rennie had said he was “bloody angry” after a last-minute change of travel plans by the New Zealanders meant the match could not take place in the West Australian city this Saturday as planned.
The Test, which doubles as a second-round Rugby Championship match and a third Bledisloe Cup clash, has been rescheduled for Sunday, 5 September.
But Rennie said Friday his team were more concerned about making amends for losing 57-22 in their last meeting with the All Blacks in Auckland than rehashing the dispute.
“There’s plenty of motivating factors and the biggest one’s the scoreline last time we played,” he said.
“We really respect the All Blacks and we’re excited by the opportunity to get another crack at them.”
He said the Wallabies would be without Lukhan Salakaia-Loto and Hunter Paisami as both players were expectant fathers awaiting the birth of their first children.
A 35-man All Blacks squad travelled to Perth this week without Sam Whitelock, Richie Mo’unga and Aaron Smith because the New Zealand trio are also expectant fathers.
All three are regular starters for New Zealand but Rennie said their absence would not change his plans.
Aside from the Perth Test, the rest of this year’s Rugby Championship will be played in Australia’s Queensland state.
©️ Agence France-Presse