Sexton on Cheika ‘fear factor’

Date published: October 6 2015

Ireland fly-half Johnny Sexton believes Australia head coach Michael Cheika uses his fear factor to good effect.

Sexton was part of the Leinster outfit that Cheika led to a maiden Heineken Cup title in 2008. During the successful campaign, the playmaker learned that the Australian sometimes gets the best out of his charges through fear.

"Everyone's probably scared s***tless of him, if I was being honest!" quipped the 30-year-old.

"He knows his rugby as well, he's a very clever guy but he does have that presence where he's a pretty scary guy when you get on the wrong side of him.

"He wished me luck at the start of the World Cup and I was the same. We've always got on very well and I was delighted to see him, he's proved what a good coach he is.

"He's turned around Leinster, he's turned around New South Wales and now he's turned around Australia."

Cheika’s Wallabies were superb on Saturday, trouncing England 33-13 to boot the hosts out of the tournament. Sexton said the performance has certainly put them in the front running for what would be a third World Cup title.

"They look like a really formidable team, they look like one of the favourites to go on and win the World Cup now," continued the number ten.

"So fair play to him and hopefully I can catch up with him after the World Cup."

Australia will face Wales at Twickenham on Saturday, with the victor sealing top spot in Pool A.