Anybody recall the incident when Jannie threw a punch at another players head? His arm stiffened straight as the heel of his right hand contacted the back of the head/top of the spine of a retiring black player. A recent game, I think he was in Shark's colours. No-one said a thing.
It boils down to the ability to play with a sense of teamwork when things get ragged. Of course getting things to go gnarly is another step up but that is for the future. At the moment it is having to rely on their basic skills when the speed and thinking goes exponential that fails the Wallabies, and that requires perhaps even waiting for the next squad.
The experiment with the X factor needs to be put to bed, it is hard work and building up the squad's self-awareness that needs to be accomplished first. Not something that suits the punter mentality but this is Rugby, the game has no room for chancers, all that counts is cold-blooded execution. Cheika has the brief, he also has some runs on the board so it boils down to how many he can take with him after the Super season has ended.
One thing that needs doing is getting more fluency in the off-load game so runners can attract close support. We need most a bullocking 8 who bends the line and then delivers, would be nice if the all the forwards could join in. Yes, Hooper, McMahon are already there but we need 30 tuned up players for a successful RWC squad.
Our problem with the scrums is the inability of the IRB to write (preserve) the laws so that a fair contest can occur when possession is disputed. The scrum worked for millennia till some under-qualificationalist decided to make it a brawl and it has gone downhill since. The laws as they are today fail the game on many levels.
(a) The ref should not have to say one word.
(b) There is a mark, respect it.
(c) The ball must be fed straight down the middle over that mark and let the hookers strike.
Anything else is not Rugby and has done nothing positive for the game.
At the heart of Rugby is the notion of 'contest', it must be equal and only the constant use of skill, fitness, strength and guile over the eighty should be deciding factors in the outcome.
Rugby is at its best when broken play has scurrying minds trying to get the ball into the right hands, set pieces just restart that process and should be treated as a minor moment, not the protected, invaluable source of tedium and dross.