Cheika says talk is cheap

by Staff Writer

Wallabies coach Michael Cheika says rhetoric means nothing ahead of the World Cup final.

Cheika has been vocal about his day-to-day focus through the tournament and he said he wasn’t interested in labels or tags in the final week.

Rather, he said he simply wanted to instil in his players the same principles he has since coming on board barely a year ago.

“I’m not in for the big sweeping statements,” he said.

“I‘m a big believer that your next game is the one that proves who you are.

“The minute you start relying on clichés or tags or titles, you’ll get pinched.

“It’s happened too many times.

“I don’t know about any of those comparisons. What I know is, it’s the next game in rugby that always drives you to be better and we certainly want to continue doing that.”

The number of cameras at Wallabies media sessions seems to be growing by the day as the spotlight grows but that has not affected Australia, Cheika said.

“If I start thinking ‘oh this is a massive game’ and start doing things differently then I’m not looking after my team properly,” he said.

“I just want to make sure they're very well prepared, the best they can, then they’ll have the chance to put everything we’ve done out on the field.”

Despite being viewed as underdogs heading into the final, Cheika said there was only one way that anyone would be feeling the pressure on Saturday.

“I don’t feel like there’s any pressure. people like to talk about the whole pressure thing but we just love playing the game,” he said;

“If the game was amateur still, everybody would still be playing.

“The only time you feel pressure is if you’re not as prepared as you possibly can be.

“So let’s prepare and do our absolute best and as I’ve said many times before, the cards will fall where they fall.”

Prop Scott Sio returns to the side for the final and Cheika said he was confident he was ready to play.

“He’s played really well in this tournament,” he said.

“He was eager to get back last week but he couldn’t get back in time.

“He’s feeling very good, done everything in training and he’s looking forward to it.

“You can’t hide there where he’s playing. You’ve got to get into it. He’s fine.”

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