Wallabies great David Campese says Robbie Deans "is the worst thing that has ever happened to Australian rugby" and he wants the Kiwi sacked.
The outspoken Campese was commenting on the latest Wallabies struggles as they look to bounce back from an alarming 33-6 loss to France when they take on England at Twickenham this weekend.
"Deans has destroyed Australian rugby and I want him to go," Campese told London's Telegraph newspaper.
Campese, known for his outrageous skills, believed the current Wallabies were lacking in the basics of the game.
"We've got a team at the moment that can't catch and can't pass. Wallaby teams in the past were never like this. Anyone who knows anything about Australian rugby knows what it's famous for - loops, angles, switches, counter-attack, creative play. Where's all that gone? We can't even pass properly."
Campese has mixed emotions as the crunch game in London looms. It's a test that could be critical for deans who has been walking a tightrope all year.
"Mate, I don't want the boys to lose. I played for Australia and it's clearly hard to go against them, especially when it's against the Poms. But if Australia win, Deans stays. I just want him to go. He's the worst thing that has ever happened to Australian rugby."
Campese, known for allocating the boring tag to England down the years, reckons the Wallabies rival them for that honour now as they struggle to score tries under Deans' guidance.
"Yeah, it's quite frightening, isn't it?" he said. "The boot's on the other foot, eh? The try rate is disgusting. You've got guys in the team who can't pass from left to right. And these are supposed to be international players.
"As for Deans, I just don't know why we had to go and get a foreign coach when we've won two World Cups with our own coaches. Look at how Matt Giteau's been treated. He's sitting down there, playing in Toulon, 92 caps, finished with test rugby, and all because the coach doesn't like him. It's an ego trip."
Campese made light of Australia claiming an 18-all draw against the All Blacks last month to wrap up the season at home.
"New Zealand had won all the trophies by then," Campese said.
"I know there are injuries but even so. There are no big names there, no one to set the stadium alight. There's something missing. There's no fear factor about the Wallabies any more. And that's a sad state of affairs."
- © Fairfax NZ News