Reds players want Stiles to stay: Kerevi

Sep 26, 2017 - 11:00 PM Samu Kerevi says Queensland Reds players are behind Nick Stiles "100 per cent" and wants the Super Rugby franchise to sort out their coaching uncertainty as soon as possible.

Persistent rumours suggest the Reds are considering dumping coach Stiles and replacing him with assistant Brad Thorn.

The Queensland Rugby Union has fuelled the speculation by refusing to make any public comment on the matter, with a spokesman only pointing out that Stiles is still listed as head coach on the team's website and has been involved in pre-season planning.

The Reds won four games this season under Stiles and only three last year as he and Matt O'Connor shared the reins on an interim basis after Richard Graham's sacking.

Former Melbourne Rebels coach Tony McGahan has been drafted as a senior assistant in to add experience to the team's rookie coaching panel.

But whether Stiles, who has another year to run on his contract, will be part of it remains to be seen.

Asked if Stiles still had the support of the playing group, Kerevi said: "100 per cent. The boys love Stilesy."

"He's done a great job, obviously through the (National Rugby Championship) and then through to the season and the culture aspects he's brought on.

"It's like that with all the coaches we have there - Shane (Arnold) and Thorny are leading those things as well, and (Jason Gilmore) leading defence.

"I've been happy with Stilesy and how he's gone but all that is up to the whole organisation and what direction they want to go in."

Dual-code warrior Thorn is also at the helm of Queensland Country, who are off to their best start in NRC history.

Thorn is widely respected at the Reds and regarded as a coaching star of the future but throwing him into the top job after just two years of experience would be a huge gamble.

There are also doubts over whether the cash-strapped QRU can afford to pay out Stiles' contract.

Kerevi is currently training with the Wallabies in Johannesburg ahead of their Rugby Championship clash against the Springboks on Sunday morning (AEST) and said he had paid little attention to the murmurs back home.

"I haven't heard too much about what's going on, I've been concentrating on everything with the Wallabies," he said.

"Obviously from a player's point of view, we want all of that sorted right now.

"I'm not too sure what's going on with the decisions up top."

Source: AAP

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