Sport

Cheika backs Phipps against All Blacks

Nick Phipps looks likely to play against the All Blacks.
Nick Phipps looks likely to play against the All Blacks. PAUL MILLER

THE increasingly controversial Wallabies halfback Nick Phipps is likely to get the nod to start against the All Blacks at Eden Park on Saturday as coach Michael Cheika calls on his team to play the rugby of their lives to upset the odds.

Phipps was given an official warning by Rugby Championship organisers Sanzaar for pushing an Argentina physio to the ground in last weekend's Test against the Pumas at Twickenham.

He also made headlines the last time the Wallabies played the All Blacks in Wellington when he threw Malakai Fekitoa's loose boot high into the crowd.

The two acts of poor sportsmanship probably won't make him as unpopular with New Zealand crowds as teammate Quade Cooper, but he is heading in the right direction.

Phipps is likely to wear the No.9 jersey in the absence of Will Genia, who has been told by his club Stade Francais to return to France.

The Bledisloe Cup test, a dead rubber following the All Blacks' two convincing wins over Australia this year, falls outside the international window.

"As much as I would like to have him, no complaints from my end,” Cheika told reporters.

"They're totally within their rights to ask him to go back.”

Cheika added: "I think it's a chance for Nick Phipps to get up and get in there and get stuck in. Genia's been really good. I think he's been in some of the best form that he's had in an Australian jersey.”

"He's been really instrumental for the team as a whole, one of the senior players that we still have in the team.

"But, like I said, it's a great opportunity for Nick Phipps to get back out there and stake a claim for the jersey.

"You're going to have to play the best football of your life to get a result there,” Cheika added.

"That's what we would have been doing if the trophy was in play.

"It's not about the internal issues or the external motivation or the external pressure, it's about being ready to play the best footy you can.”

- NZ Herald

Topics:  all blacks bledisloe cup michael cheika nick phipps rugby wallabies will genia


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Ballina koalas faced with extinction

Ballina's koalas are under threat.

About 36,000 koalas left in NSW face an uncertain future

An emotional Mike Baird: 'There was great personal cost'

"After 10 years in public life, this moment for me has arrived."

Surfer calls for second shark net off one coastal town

SIGNS OF SUPPORT: Young protesters make their opinions clear at a rally in support of shark nets at Ballina last November. More than 500 people attended the event calling for the immediate installation of the nets. PHOTO: ALINA RYLKO/ THE NORTHERN STAR

Kids surfing near the Lennox Hotel are at risk of shark encounters

Local Partners

41-year-old playgroup under threat of closing down

IT'S been an important part of the Ballina community for decades, but this playgroup could be forced to shut its doors.

See turtles up close on rescue centre tour

SPLASH: This green sea turtle, held by Australian Seabird Rescue general manager Kath Southwell, splashed some of the children on a tour of seabird rescue's headquarters.

The turtles don't mind giving the tour groups a splash, too

Shrek on stage

POPULAR MUSICAL: Shrek (River Fullagar) interrupts the wedding, shocking Fiona (Hillary Goodsell), the Bishop (Grace Pateman) and a furious Farquaad (Lachlan McGeary) in the Ballina Players' latest production.

The best-known green ogre is the star in Ballina Players production

Humble Cortina expected to shine at show

BOYS TOYS: Members of the North Coast Street Machines (from left) Errol Beaumont, Steven Fitness, Les Eckersley and John Stanford are ready for this Sunday's show and shine in Ballina, with their vehicles (from left) 1964 EH Holden, 1962 S Series Valiant, 1934 Ford, 1969 XW GT Falcon and a 1974 L Cortina.

There aren't many who can say they own thefirst car they bought

Buderim man strips off for speed dating with a twist

RAW AMBITION: Buderim local Jackson pictured with his blind date Candice in a scene from SBS's new dating show Undressed.

People have done stranger things for love

Matthew McConaughey wrongly used as medical example

Doctor tried to steal credit for McConaughey's hair treatment

J.K. Rowling writes through severe back pain

An aching back couldn't stop J.K. Rowling catching inspiration

Elsa voice actor's son hates Frozen

Idina Menzel's son "hates" his mother's most famous film 'Frozen'

Chrissy Teigen likes her "soft" stretch marks

Stretch marks are no problem for Chrissy Teigen

Naomie Harris in the dark over Daniel Craig's future as 007

Naomie Harris has no idea if Daniel Craig will be returning as 007

Thousands of jobs part of $1b retirement village project

THIS YEAR: An artist impression of the new Aveo retirement village in Springfield.

Aveo Springfield unveiled this month, homes ready by July

KNIFE-EDGE: The housing tightrope we now face

Even the smallest interest rate rise will be hard for some to handle.

One if five home owners at risk, according to new analysis

Historical home leaves family's hands after 75 years

SALE CONFIRMED: The Gympie Regional   Realty team which sold the Ramsey property are (back) Mel Gastigar, Dorothy Palmer and Margaret Cochrane, with (front) home seller Terri-Jayne Ramsey.

Ramsey family played a huge role in Gympie's growth.

Pat Rafter's $18m Coast home proves hot property

PAT'S PAD: The Sunshine Beach home of tennis ace Pat rafter is on the market for a record price.

"It's a record for our company and for the Sunshine Coast.''

INTERACTIVE MAP: Which Northern Rivers towns boomed in 2016?

BOOM TOWNS: While Ballina properties continued to attract top dollar in 2016, it was areas to the south that experienced price hikes, including Wardell, Evans Head and Woodburn.

Click on our map to find the median sale price in your town

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!