Wallabies coach Dave Rennie has spoken out against the ‘unacceptable’ limited preparation time his side will have for their Bledisloe Cup Test against the All Blacks in New Zealand.
New Zealand Rugby is in the process of scheduling its dates for the two Bledisloe Cup Tests, which are set to take place in New Zealand before Australia hosts the Rugby Championship.
According to the Sydney Morning Herald, inside sources have said that New Zealand Rugby want the first Test against the Wallabies to take place on 10 October.
However, Rugby Australia prefers the Test to be delayed by a week until 17 October, given the strict quarantine restrictions the Wallabies will be subjected to once they touch down in New Zealand.
If NZR gets their way, it would mean that the Wallaby squad would have to depart for New Zealand on 20 September, just one day after the Super Rugby AU final between the Reds and Brumbies, who together contribute 24 members of their 44-man squad.
The squad would have to spend the first four days in New Zealand isolated in their rooms and would only be able to train together as a full group seven days before the first Test.
Meanwhile, the All Blacks would be able to gather and train together far before that, which Rennie belives would give them an unfair advantage.
‘New Zealand Rugby’s got an expectation that we jump on a plane a day after the Super Rugby final, have two weeks in quarantine where we can’t prepare as a team, and play a Test seven days later,’ Rennie said.
‘Under those quarantine arrangements, I can assure you we won’t be playing a Test that weekend.
‘To try and create a culture, to spend time around team building, to get our structures and clarity around all our team detail, is massively important. But you can’t do that as a group for the first two weeks.
‘We’ll have some young guys introducing themselves to some of our other Wallabies two weeks into the camp, so it’s unacceptable. We won’t be playing a Test under those sort of conditions.’
Photo: Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images