Wallabies need to call on Ella and Campese’s expertise

David Lord Columnist

By David Lord, David Lord is a Roar Expert

 , , ,

63 Have your say

    F*** Yeah! Campo changed the role of the winger and deserves to be on rugby union's Mount Rushmore. (AP Photo/Brian Little)

    It’s never too late for the Australian Rugby Union to officially appoint Mark Ella and David Campese, the two most attacking Wallabies in history and a sheer delight to watch, as consultants to the men-in-gold.

    It would mean Campese relinquishing his expert Roar position he only started yesterday.

    But in the best interests of Wallaby rugby, that’s a price Roarers would have to pay.

    One of the big problems facing the ARU is the code falling well behind in the entertainment race.

    Entertaining in the 21st century is just as important as winning. Winning ugly is counter-productive. It’s entertainment that triggers the turnstiles to click.

    And there hasn’t been two better Wallaby exponents than the mercurial fly-half the Fijians call Makella, and the goose-stepping winger Campo.

    Yet they have been virtually ignored. What a tragic waste of born talent.

    How would they consult?

    By being integral members of the Wallaby think-tank headed by coach Robbie Deans, a lateral thinker.

    And what a truck load of explosive back-line talent Ella and Campese have to work with – Will Genia, Quade Cooper, James O’Connor, Kurtley Beale, Digby Ioane, Drew Mitchell, Rob Horne, and Adam Ashley-Cooper.

    It’s as good as, and potentially better than, the mighty 1984 Grand Slammers – Nick Farr-Jones, Ella, Michael Lynagh, Andy Slack, Campese, Brendan Moon, Peter Grigg, and Roger Gould.

    The key to current success rests right there – Ella and Campese.

    Both were naturally-gifted, but allowed a free rein by the likes of the then coaches Alan Jones and Bob Dwyer.

    That’s where Deans surfaces. Deep down he would love to play running rugby, like the November 2010 clash with Five-Nations champions France at State de France, pouring on six brilliant and unanswered second half tries to win 59-16 going away.

    But there have been far too many bad backline days, like the 35-18 loss to England and 32-23 loss to Samoa last year, or the 15-6 loss to Ireland at the RWC, forcing Deans into safety mode.

    Ella and Campese aren’t miracle workers, but they have been there, done that with Bledisloe Cup success, and the one-and-only coveted Slam.

    What they would achieve is stability, and the confidence that goes with it.

    There’s no reason why the Wallabies shouldn’t be the number one ranked nation in the world.

    The odds of achieving that goal would be a lot shorter if Mark Ella and David Campese were at the coal-face, instead of writing about it.

    David Lord
    David Lord

    David Lord was deeply involved in two of the biggest sporting stories - World Series Cricket in 1977 and professional rugby in 1983. After managing Jeff Thomson and Viv Richards during WSC, in 1983 David signed 208 of the best rugby players from Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales and France to play an international pro circuit. The concept didn?t get off the ground, but it did force the IRB to get cracking and bring in the World Rugby Cup, now one of the world?s great sporting spectacles

    Have Your Say

    If not logged in, please enter your name and email before submitting your comment. Please review our comments policy before posting on the Roar.

    Oldest | Newest | Most Recent

    The Crowd Says (63)

    • Editor

      February 23rd 2012 @ 5:13am
      Tristan Rayner said | February 23rd 2012 @ 5:13am | ! Report

      Hi all,

      Don’t forget The Roar’s Super Rugby Tipping competition will start tomorrow.

      Now, the goal for me every year is to beat Spiro Zavos, but I was a whisker out of the top 10 last year – so bring your A-game and join in to claim bragging rights against some of the best Rugby minds in Australia.

      Link to join: http://www.theroar.com.au/tipping/


    • February 23rd 2012 @ 5:31am
      mania said | February 23rd 2012 @ 5:31am | ! Report

      whats needed is a forward pack.i have the utmost respect for campese and ella, two of the greatest aus has ever produced and among the most honoured of NZ’s honoured enemies. but their expertise arent in where the aus team suffer most and thats in the forwards.
      aus has natural flair in the backs so the situation there isnt so dire. its the forwards who are slow , weak and a bit un-co. u need forwards who can do the set pieces, rumble the mauls, crash it up the middle across the adv line but also open up and link with the backline.
      campese and ella have been highly crtitical of deans and though sometimes a good rivalry brings out the best in relationships i think in this case there’d be too much angst to get a productive patrnership going.

    • February 23rd 2012 @ 5:43am
      kingplaymaker said | February 23rd 2012 @ 5:43am | ! Report

      mania the forwards aren’t just not very good, more importantly they’re not very big. They are regularly outmuscled and this is the true problem.

    • February 23rd 2012 @ 5:43am
      Sam Starr said | February 23rd 2012 @ 5:43am | ! Report

      Thats a fair statement we have an outstanding backline that can tear through any team on the day.
      As for the forwards David Pocock is a great asset and he definately saved us in the quater final
      and would have been very handy against Ireland.But overall i think the forward need more ticker.

    • February 23rd 2012 @ 6:04am
      mania said | February 23rd 2012 @ 6:04am | ! Report

      the problems is not muscle its the top 2 inches. they need some balls and brains. muscle would definately be an advantage but they have to get forwards who’re creative and have some fight to them. pointless having big forwards if they’re stupid and stand around doing nothing.
      what puzzles me is that the wallabies has a fantastic backline, world beaters who love running the ball. in the superTeams though its the opposite . conservative, “dont want to lose” and “kick it away” mentality takes precedence.
      why is that?

    • February 23rd 2012 @ 6:28am
      kingplaymaker said | February 23rd 2012 @ 6:28am | ! Report

      mania possibly they have a handful of very good backs, and a lot of others who really aren’t up to much.

      • February 23rd 2012 @ 6:44am
        mania said | February 23rd 2012 @ 6:44am | ! Report

        KPM – and thats why aus can get to the top but wont stay there for long. u only need 15 players to be the best but u need depth to stay there

    , , ,