Matt Giteau backs decision to cut Australian Super Rugby team
Former Wallaby Matt Giteau believes Australian rugby will be better off with just four Super Rugby teams in the years to come.
Writing for the Players’ Voice, the former Western Force star said he felt for the players and staff in Perth but added that something needed to change after the disastrous 2017 Super Rugby season.
“This is a bit controversial but, from the outside looking in, I think for Australian rugby to be successful and be a force again, five teams are too many for us. Four teams is the way to go. I’m not saying the Force should’ve been the team cut, but someone had to be moved out,” Giteau wrote.
“You look at those five teams this season and pretty much all the starting XVs were guaranteed their spots. That’s not ideal. I remember back in the Super 12 – when the Reds, Brumbies and Tahs were very successful – how hard you had to train to hold your position. You never got in a comfortable position where you thought, ‘I’m safe now’. You were always getting pushed by someone else. That makes better players.”
Giteau played 37 matches for the Force between 2007 and 2009, before rejoining the Brumbies in 2010.
After seven seasons with Top 14 club Toulon in France, Giteau signed with Japenese club Suntory Sungoliath this year but said he’s still been keeping a close eye on things in Australia.
“It’s been tough watching all the drama unfold in Australian rugby from afar. I was saddened the day the Force were cut and Bill Pulver stood down. I’m a proud Australian and I want to see the national team and Super Rugby teams doing well. When I first arrived in France the Wallabies were talked about in very high regard. That diminished a bit over the years I was there,” he continued.
“The players in Australia are good, if not better, than when I was running around. And I know for a fact that the coach is good. But the administration and the way the game is run is letting everything down.”