On the eve of his final match for the Melbourne Rebels, Mitch Inman has spoken openly and honestly about the impact the Australian Rugby Union's indecision has had on his teammates at the club.
The 28-year-old centre, who is leaving Melbourne after six years to join French Top 14 side Oyonnax, will play his 100th Super Rugby match against the Jaguares at AAMI Park on Friday night, in what could be the Rebels' last-ever game.
More than three months since announcing Melbourne or the Western Force would be cut, there's been no decision by the ARU, leaving players and staff in a farcical situation heading into the final round game.
The Rebels have claimed it's "business as usual" and this week announced they'd signed Waratahs centre David Horwitz.With a massive injury toll, Melbourne have only managed one win this season and Inman said the weight of uncertainty had contributed to their poor showing.
"I take my hat off to the younger players with what they've experienced this season with the uncertainty and lack of transparency from the ARU to us to see where our future is heading," Inman said.
"It's hard enough for an experienced player like myself to get my head around so you could only imagine what it would be like for a 21-year-old who is trying to start his rugby career.
"There's been a few things off the field that haven't been handled as well as we'd like them to be and that's showing with the on-field performances."Inman hoped the team could rally in their final round game, which is also the last for coach Tony McGahan after four years at the helm.
He said there was a bright future for the Rebels if they survived the axe, with ARU pencilling in early August for an announcement.
"When I'm out there training with some of these players I see their potential," Inman said.
"I'm sure with some transparency on our future, then all they have to worry about is their on-field performances and when that starts happening and they play to their potential they've got a very bright future."The Rebels take on the Jaguares at AAMI Park on Friday night, kicking off at 7:35pm AEST, broadcast LIVE on FOX SPORTS and on radio at RUGBY.com.au.