Beale: Tahs tackle 'lying' Rebels
Beale: Tahs tackle 'lying' RebelsSHARE
Waratahs coach Michael Cheika accused the Rebels of being 'economical with the truth' when they suggested they had declined to extend the contract of troubled Wallaby Kurtley Beale.
In a statement issued at the weekend the Rebels said they will not extend the contract of Beale beyond the 2013 season – effectively confirming his departure from Melbourne following the Rebels 38-37 win over the Highlanders.
This follows the announcement last week that Beale would miss the match to continue his rehabilitation from his alcohol binges and related indiscretions.
"It is no secret that he has been facing some significant personal challenges," the Rebels Chief Executive Rob Clarke said in a statement.
"The Rebels have supported him through this process and at all times have made decisions in the best interests of Kurtley's welfare," Clarke added.
"Kurtley will to continue his off-field program in Sydney and the Rebels believe that he should remain there supported by his family network."
However, Cheika believes the statement is not a true reflection of recent events and that the Rebels are using this as a smokescreen for the fact that the Waratahs had beat them in a bidding war for Beale's services.
Beale, who was suspended twice by the Rebels for alcohol-related off-field incidents this season, has been widely tipped to return to the Waratahs in 2014.
An unimpressed Cheika accused the Rebels of bending the truth.
"He's another guy who nobody wants by the sound of it," Cheika quipped, after the Waratahs' season-ending 12-14 loss to the Reds.
"I noticed that [statement] come out from Melbourne.
"I think that's a little bit disappointing to be honest that they'd put that out, because their captain was out saying a couple of days before: 'We want him to stay here and [that] we could play with him no drama'.
"So maybe the fact that that they didn't get him, they put that out to go against the bloke to make him look like he's no good – and I think that that's really bad karma.
"You shouldn't be doing that to make yourself look good. Go for the player and, if he comes to you, that's great. If he doesn't, move on.
"You don't have to try and get him in the public eye. That wasn't necessary from Melbourne.
"I think it's very different to the situation with James O'Connor. They're trying to turn … I don't know, they're not telling the truth."
Cheika made no secret of the Waratahs' desire to lure Beale back after he left Sydney for the Rebels two years ago.
"We want him," he said.
"I've said that already, or that we're talking with him."
A disallowed try in the closing stages has prevented the Waratahs from ending a season of promise on a high.
Despite outscoring the Reds by two tries to one, the home side was unable to capitalise on a number of late chances that would have seen them reclaim the Templeton Cup for the first time since 2011.
Cheika said he was "obviously very disappointed".
"The first half was punctuated by mistakes and everyone getting back into the swing of things," Cheika said.
"The second half I thought we did OK, we started to string a bit of play together. Still dropped a bit of ball and gave a few bad passes but through our effort [the Reds] weren't really in it apart from those two penalties.
"There were opportunities at the end there we should've finished, we didn't capitalise on them and we were made to pay.
"This year we've had a bit of a theme – score more tries [than the opposition] but don't score our goals. We're still in the infancy of learning how to win so we'll need to make sure we can carry those lessons over to next time."
Despite the result, Cheika praised the team's tenacity, as they mounted wave after wave of attack in the closing stages.
"It showed excellent character from the guys. They could've easily said 'look it's the end of the season' but they really wanted to win. There's been a clear shift in attitude and work ethic around the club. We've had a lot of positive feedback in terms of our style and the effort we're putting in, not only on the field but around the club."
The loss marked the final appearance in blue for Sitaleki Timani, John Ulugia, Tom Kingston and Berrick Barnes.
Sources: NZ Newswire & Waratahs media unit