Surgery puts Cheika in a sling

Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

Wallabies coach Michael Cheika won’t be sharing a beer with New Zealand’s Steve Hansen anytime soon but he has a pretty good excuse.

Cheika underwent shoulder surgery on Tuesday after a collision in training, a procedure that has forced him off alcohol and into a sling for much of the Spring Tour.

Hansen offered to share a beer with his Australian counterpart after a frosty post-match played out on Saturday night, but Cheika said he had moved on from the whole situation.

“I’m off the alcohol since the operation so I'm ruled out of all drinking contests,” he laughed.

“I think the New Zealand series has been well and truly concluded and we got well and truly beaten.

“The only thing regarding that is me to get my team playing better for the next time that opportunity comes.”

Steve Hansen has brushed off critism from England coach Eddie Jones. Photo: Getty ImagesCheika will be restricted in his movement, unlikely to be able to be as involved in training as he has in the past, packing down in scrums with his players.

“I'm out for this season but if I work on myself hard, I'll be right for next season, training, no problem at all.

“I wasn't that keen to go and get it (surgery) done.

“They said if I didn't do it I wouldn't be able to use my arm properly. So, She's done now, I can't turn back.”

While he’s feeling the pain of the incident, Cheika said there would be no ramifications for the player who caused the injury, though the coach didn’t name the culprit.

“We'd be in big trouble if we left him out I tell you,” he said.

“When I rang my missus afterwards and told her what happened the first thing she said was 'is the player alright?"

“It was an interesting day out.”