Wallabies boss Michael Cheika is trying to keep Kurtley Beale in Australian rugby, but won’t influence his code-of-conduct hearing.
New Wallabies boss Michael Cheika is doing his utmost to keep Kurtley Beale in Australian rugby, but will have no influence on his code-of-conduct hearing.
Beale faces the disciplinary process after an in-flight confrontation and lewd text messages to former Wallabies Business Manager Di Patston.
The 25-year-old’s hearing takes place in Sydney on Friday and his fate will be decided by an independent panel comprising District Court judge Mark Williams SC, former Wallabies lock David Giffin and barrister Dominic Villa.
Cheika and his 33-man Wallabies squad are scheduled to leave for their five-match tour of Europe on the same day.
And although Cheika admits he would love to have Beale – who was in superb form for the Waratahs during their triumphant Super Rugby campaign – in his squad, he will not get involved in the disciplinary process against the Wallaby playmaker.
”There’s no doubt he had a great season last year,” Cheika told AAP.
“But I’m sure that Friday everything that needs to get done will get done.
”But it’s pretty important that I stay out of it and let it take its course.”
Cheika revealed that he has spoken to Beale during this week, and ARU chief executive Bill Pulver also said during Cheika’s unveiling as Wallaby coach that the duo have spoken about Beale during contract negotiations.
Cheika, who will continue with his role as the Super Rugby champions’ coach in 2015, is concerned what impact losing Beale – if the player is found guilty and not offered a new ARU contract – would have on the Waratahs.
It will leave him with very little time to find a replacement and also impact on the Waratahs’ ability to recruit new players.
Cheika said even if Beale is cleared of any misconduct, it doesn’t mean that he will be joining the Wallaby touring squad.
”I wouldn’t put it that way just yet,” Cheika said on Nine News’ Today Show.
”You’ve got to just let it pan out.”