Frustrated Rebels staying focused on job at hand
INTERVIEW: Melbourne Rebels assistant coach Morgan Turinui has reminded his side to stay focused on the task despite the growing distraction.
As the speculation intensifies following the ARU's statement yesterday, Turinui has reminded the players to "control the controllables" ahead of Saturday’s game against the Brumbies.
The Rebels, still searching for their first win of the year, are busy preparing for their second Australian derby of the 2017 Super Rugby season.
Turinui, who's experienced a similar situation while playing in France, said the focus was firmly on the team's return to AAMI Park following the bye.
"We don't know anything [about the decision] so it hasn't changed the situation for us so we're just preparing for the Brumbies," Turinui told melbournerebels.com.
"There's only one thing we can control and that's our performance this weekend.
"As an assistant coach of a football team, that's all I've pretty much had to worry about.
"I've had enough problems trying to unlock the very good Brumbies defence so I'll let the powers to be work [the decision] out.
"I was involved in a French club that folded due to money problems so the big lesson I learnt there was to keep my head down and control the things that I can – my job and the players' job is preparing for a game of Super Rugby."
Turinui said it was up to the club to recognise the fans patience and loyalty with a solid performance after a difficult start to the season – on and off the field.
"I think if we can focus on the process of putting on a good performance and repaying the faith and support those fans have been hurt by some of this stuff that been going around," Turinui said.
"It's about time that we started putting a performance on the field that the people of Melbourne can grab a hold of and be proud of and pay back some of the great loyalty that we’ve had from our fans.
"The Force did that on the weekend and we need to do it for our guys as well."
After opening their season with four games against New Zealand opposition in the first five outings, the Rebels will take on the Australian Conference leaders on Saturday.
The Brumbies sit seven points clear at the top of the Australian ladder with three wins from six games after they downed the Reds 43-10 last weekend in Canberra.