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Rebels take tough road to success

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    New Melbourne Rebels coach Tony McGahan is dishing out some tough love as he moulds his side into a Super Rugby force.

    The Rebels, playing in their fourth Super season, aren’t prepared to settle for just making up the numbers in 2014.

    Centre Mitch Inman said that former Wallabies assistant McGahan, who has replaced Damien Hill, was about short term pain for long term gain.

    “He can be quite a harsh critic,” Inman said of McGahan, a former schoolteacher.

    “You think you’re doing really well in pre-season and you’ll go for a meeting and he’ll give you some very constructive criticism.

    “It’s a good wake-up call.”

    Inman said while the feedback could be tough to take, it would benefit the side in the long term.

    “It may be a bit harsh but what he’s trying to do will benefit you and get the best out of you as a player.”

    Following the departure of star backs James O’Connor and Kurtley Beale, Inman, 25, is ready to step up as one of the most experienced backs in the side.

    He also hopes that includes representative selection.

    Inman is set to be partnered by exciting youngster Tom English although with the arrival of veteran Kiwi Tamati Ellison it’s far from settled.

    “No-one’s guaranteed anything, there’s a lot of competition and I think it brings out the best in everybody,” he said.

    “The more competition in each position the better.”

    Inman said that the Rebels could look to the grand finalists Brumbies for inspiration in terms of their progress and resulting Test selection.

    “The more that we win the more chance that we have of people being selected at a higher level,” he said.

    “Two years ago the Brumbies were struggling and they turned it around quite quickly and you see a lot of their players getting picked because they’re playing well as a team and that’s where we need to get to.”

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (13)

    • Roar Rookie

      December 28th 2013 @ 12:24pm
      Stray Gator said | December 28th 2013 @ 12:24pm | ! Report

      There is definitely a different vibe in the air around Princes Park this year.

      Only 33 sleeps to go. Can’t wait.

    • December 29th 2013 @ 10:01am
      hog said | December 29th 2013 @ 10:01am | ! Report

      It will be great for the rebels to grab a few early wins that will help with crowd numbers, you would think that say 15,000 avg is acceptable for crowds, remember Melb is a city of 5 Million and being a pay tv sport, it is just to easy for the code to fly under the radar.

      A positive appears to be a bit more depth, that is always the issue with new teams they can compete when they are able to field their top team, but struggle when injuries hit.

      Also great to see the Rebels really pushing the local competition, long term that will pay the biggest dividends.

      Go Rebels 2014

    • December 29th 2013 @ 4:41pm
      Magic Sponge said | December 29th 2013 @ 4:41pm | ! Report

      Can they make the top 10. That will be an achievement for their roster

      • December 29th 2013 @ 6:17pm
        Chan Wee said | December 29th 2013 @ 6:17pm | ! Report

        Both NZ and OZ have one too many teams in the S15.

        they just dont have the QUALITY players to support 5 teams.

        when injuries take the toll , it becomes a farce later on.

        UEFA cup allows a team to have 25 guys for the tournament and that is just footy.

        S15 aloows like 32 players (?) where in every match there is bound to be an injury or two.

        Somehow the TV and marketing and finacial considerations has overtaken and sidelined player wellfare.

        Even in Europe a team like Toulon have over 40 guys in the squad.

        • December 30th 2013 @ 9:40pm
          hog said | December 30th 2013 @ 9:40pm | ! Report

          Chan Wee, NZ are the best performing rugby nation in the world and have been for pretty much the last century if they do not have enough players to support 5 super teams please name a country that does.

          However i do agree with the assumption that the expansion of the competiton is diluting the original concept that was Super rugby, the issue appears to be that Super teams are limited to selecting the majority of their squad from each country.
          Take the premier league how many players would come from Engalnd.

          • December 31st 2013 @ 12:02am
            chann wee said | December 31st 2013 @ 12:02am | ! Report

            @ HOG :

            Since u answered ur question ๐Ÿ˜› I will say South Africa.

            Bigger population thus more classy players.

            NZ may be the best team but they do not have enuf “classy” players to support 5 teams.

            why do u think brad Thorn is still playing???

            also one team brought in Mose Tuiaili (8) for want of good players.

            with the older all black class guys leaving , its difficult to get the quality all over.

            and injuries will always affect teams.

            super 12 was the ideal size , less matches but of much higher quality.

            • December 31st 2013 @ 6:13am
              Jerry said | December 31st 2013 @ 6:13am | ! Report

              There were just as many NZ teams in the Super 12.

              • December 31st 2013 @ 5:00pm
                ohtani's jacket said | December 31st 2013 @ 5:00pm | ! Report


              • December 31st 2013 @ 8:02pm
                Chan Wee said | December 31st 2013 @ 8:02pm | ! Report

                @ Jerry :

                ah ok , I was under the impression it was 4 x 3 , but that was before professional era. (4 3 3)

            • Roar Guru

              December 31st 2013 @ 7:00am
              peeeko said | December 31st 2013 @ 7:00am | ! Report

              dont think that SA has ever produced 5 sides of good quality in super rugby

    • December 29th 2013 @ 9:47pm
      boomeranga said | December 29th 2013 @ 9:47pm | ! Report

      Their pack looks the unit that can take them forward. If a few guys like Pyle, Colby and Jones mature then id guess they are a chance of stepping up a level, but backline is still a bit underwhelming for me.

    • Roar Guru

      December 30th 2013 @ 4:07pm
      sixo_clock said | December 30th 2013 @ 4:07pm | ! Report

      Message to the individual Rebels,

      Maintain as high a level of personal aerobic fitness as possible, improve core strength.
      Harden and commit to a sensible alcohol strategy, it has a negative athletic value, it is merely a social lubricant.
      Concentrate on the basic skills, left and right hand, nail them, never ever fail in these.
      Settle your communication strategy, are you a plotter and planner, or are you the encourager.
      Build and maintain bonds, with everybody in the squad, be positive, never negative.
      Remember, team, team, team first and only will decide outcomes.
      The breakdown is where Rugby games are decided, this comes first, build a commitment to this vital aspect.
      Oh yeah, have a lot of fun and enjoy the heartfelt, hoarse support from the Army and all of us members and fans.

    • January 8th 2014 @ 1:41am
      ozinsa said | January 8th 2014 @ 1:41am | ! Report

      I hope these guys kick on this year. Whilst Higginbotham was firing before the BIL last year they were playing some great rugby. My new second favourite side.

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