Steve Hansen, the head coach of the world champions New Zealand Rugby Team has suggested that the established players of the Australia Rugby Team who were scratching around to discover their best form in the preliminary rounds of the Super Rugby series might already have started looking forward to the tour of the British and Irish Lions of the country, which is affecting their performances.
Speaking about the arrival of the Lions in the summer, Hansen raised various points that might make the officials of the Australian team wake up and take notice.
He stated that whenever there is a big event or the Lions come down for a tour, the senior players of the national team start focusing on that event from a long time ahead and as a result, their focus on winning the Super 15 is not as concrete as it should be. Speaking to a radio station in his native in New Zealand, Hansen also stated that it might just turn out to be a good thing for the Australia Rugby Team because they will come together to produce an extremely competitive side.
Both the Reds as well as the Waratahs, the two teams which had the most number of players called up to a training camp earlier in the season with an eye on the tour of the Lions have been underperforming in the opening rounds of the tournament with the New South Wales side already dropping several big name players due to the lack of performance.
However, Hansen has also seen a similarity in the slow start of the Reds as that in 2012 when most of the players for the Australia Rugby Team gradually paced themselves into the thick of things and slowly and surely, their performance began to improve with each game.