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Giteau a must for Wallabies, says Rea

Darren Walton 18/06/2011 11:11:55 PM Comments (0)

Brumbies mentor Tony Rea urged Wallabies coach Robbie Deans to keep the faith with Matt Giteau, after the classy midfielder once again starred in a soundly beaten Super Rugby team on Saturday night.

Giteau was superb in the Brumbies' season-ending 41-7 loss to the NSW Waratahs, but Deans surely would have been hugely impressed with the 91-Test stalwart, while casting a discerning eye over his World Cup candidates from the ANZ Stadium stands.

It was the 28-year-old's last game for the Brumbies, before taking up an 18-month deal to play with Toulon in France.

Rea said Giteau had been the shining light for the Brumbies in an otherwise hugely disappointing 2011 campaign.

"It's not the result he wanted at the end, but clearly his performance was absolutely outstanding again," Rea said.

"His leadership was great. He bustled his way through a big contest.

"He does it in training - non-stop in training. I wish he'd walk out of the room so I could tell you what I really think about him. I've never seen anyone like him.

"He's buggered every week from trying to lift the group and carry them forward.

"I know Australian rugby has got the impression that he's a grumpy fella and hard to get on with, but I've coached him now for 14 weeks - and he is that, but in all the right ways.

"He tests you, he challenges you, he pushes you and all that, and he's difficult at times because he wants to win and he keeps trying to compete.

"If the public don't like the look of that stuff, then they're reading him wrong because he's representing everything well there."

Asked if he would be in his Wallabies' starting side, Rea said: "First picked, no question.

"Because you need competitors. You're going to need experience, you're going to need toughness, you're going to need that stuff."

Giteau said while it was sad to farewell the Brumbies in such disappointing fashion, he left everything on the park in 2011.

"For me this year, I feel I've got no regrets," he said.

"I gave everything I could for the Brumbies this year and I've personally been reasonably proud with how I've played.

"In terms of my career, I'm not sure where this year stands. But this year was a real test of my character, I think, throughout the year because it's been such a disappointing year as far as the team's concerned.

"So, yeah, it's been a tough one for me, but one I've enjoyed."

Giteau, who spent three years with the Western Force from 2007-09, wouldn't rule out a third stint with the Brumbies.

"If I feel I've got something to offer at the end of my contract, and if I still feel that I can add value to the organisation or even to the Super competition, then I'd love to come back," he said.

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