Rennie has no illusions over task ahead

Dave Rennie believes his experience in Europe can benefit his Wallabies.
Dave Rennie believes his experience in Europe can benefit his Wallabies.

Dave Rennie believes Australia can benefit from the experience he has gained with Glasgow as he prepares to take up his new role as head coach of the Wallabies.

Rennie has spent the last four years with the Warriors, guiding them to the Guinness PRO14 final last year, and believes the spell in the northern hemisphere has left him better equipped for international rugby.

"It's been good for me," said Rennie, who is leaving Glasgow earlier than planned amid the shutdown.

"I was keen to experience a different culture and a different type of footie.

"Rugby goes forever up here, the seasons roll into one, so you have to be very detailed around your planning.

"Around the international commitments you lose players for big chunks of time so you have to bring through young kids and manage a much bigger squad.

"It's very set-piece orientated and we've developed a pretty good scrum and an excellent line-out, and I know if I bring an international team up here our set-piece has to be good enough...

"I've got to know a lot of players and the clubs and I've got a good understanding of how the international teams work, so when I bring an international team up here I'll know what to expect."

Rennie is braced for a big challenge as he tries to rescue the fortunes of an Australian team that has slipped to seventh in the world rankings after last year's World Cup, while off-field issues led Raelene Castle - the woman who appointed Rennie - to resign as Rugby Australia chief executive last month.

"Things have been a bit messy and that's putting it mildly," Rennie said.

"An enormous amount of stuff has come out in the press and that's one thing I'd like to stop. A lot of discussions need to happen behind closed doors...

"But there are lots of good things happening in Australian rugby. The Super Rugby coaches have given us a lot of access to the players and we've done a lot of work with those guys.

"Personally I'm in a better place than I would have been if we'd been playing PRO14, so if there are any positives from the pause to the season it would be that. I'm a lot clearer on the players and where they're at and what we need to do."

Rennie is planning to return home to New Zealand within the next fortnight, but as things stand he must then spend two weeks in quarantine.

He is not expecting to head to Australia until mid-July.

Australian Associated Press