Michael Cheika with Los Pumas: “I’m enjoying being around and trying to help them as much as I can”

Michael Cheika with Los Pumas: "I'm enjoying being around and trying to help them as much as I can"

Wednesday was make-up day for The Pumas and also with joy after SANZAAR’s announcement of the continuity of the Rugby Championship for 10 years. One day before, less than two weeks to start of the Three Nations, held his first training session with a full 45-man squad at the Leichhardt Oval Stadium, located 10 minutes from downtown Sydney. The 13 men who come from European rugby finished their mandatory quarantine and joined the rest of the squad, which arrived in Australia on October 5, facing the friendly meeting next Saturday, November 7, from 1 AM (Argentine time) before a team of the local union.

Michael Cheika, external consultant for Los Pumas expressed his feelings, after almost three weeks with the team:

“I am having a great time here. It’s a great group of people, both staff and players. There is a very good atmosphere. There has been a lot of adversity for the team this year and a long struggle away from their families. Quarantines in hotels and various difficult situations. Everyone here seeks to make the most of the opportunity they have been given, which is very good ”.

On the importance of improving day by day.
“Obviously, I think you have to learn and improve first. That is extremely important, to get small victories every day. Especially at this time, where there are no games to play, to know where you stand. We are going to play test matches without much previous experience. Simply improving each day according to the role that you play, in your work on the court and also enjoy a lot. Also be aware and enjoy for many people in Argentina who do not have this opportunity. The team wants to make sure they are well prepared for this possibility. “

His vision of the players on the squad and their attitude.
“The players have shown in the last game against Australia XV that they are hungry to continue improving and that they feel very sorry for the shirt. It is true that there is still a long way to go for some of them. But it is great that there is a large group, made up of renowned players, sharing their experience with a lot of new guys. They can also be seen asking good questions, which is extremely important. I’m enjoying being around and trying to help them where I can ”.

On the conformation of the entire campus.
“Listening to some of the guys who were quarantined, it wasn’t fun. And the players who were in a “real world” felt and knew what those who were isolated were experiencing. Yesterday when the European players came out and met the other group I noticed a lot of emotion. And it was also interesting because some of the guys had never seen each other. Young players who did not know men like Nicolás Sánchez, Pablo Matera. So for them to meet for the first time and immediately start training together was very interesting. Both on and off the field. You can see the intensity in each practice, which from now on is going to be very important for the next few weeks, especially when the Tri Nations starts ”.

Source: UAR Press.

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