Super Rugby
Cheika not scared of losing Folau, Beale
RUGBY

Cheika not scared of losing Folau, Beale

Waratahs coach Michael Cheika insists he isn't scared of losing dynamic duo Israel Folau and Kurtley Beale to rugby league, as NRL clubs continue to circle.

Canterbury coach Des Hasler was spotted in the crowd at a recent Waratahs game, reportedly to check out Beale's skills, while Folau was snapped having a coffee with NRL head of football Todd Greenberg last week.

Beale is off contract at the end of this season and has been strongly linked with a move to the Bulldogs, while the in-demand Folau will be a free agent at the end of next season.

Cheika could be forgiven for losing sleep over the future of his star pair but he wasn't showing his concern at a joint press conference with Folau on Tuesday.

"At the end of the day with all of this stuff it's just got to do with what the player wants to do," Cheika said.

"No one's going to talk the player into doing anything. If he's feeling good in a certain environment, playing a certain game or with a certain team (he'll stay), or if he feels like a change he'll take a change.

"If a player comes up to the coach and says, 'I hate it here I'm leaving', you're not going to tell him he has to stay.

"I think it's made a bit too complicated sometimes. It's really simple ... you talk about it and if a guy wants to play with you he wants to play with you.

"I don't blame the league guys for sniffing around, it's normal in a professional game.

"At the end of the day the guys are mature and they can decide what they want to do all day every day so I'm not stressed about those things."

NRL clubs are already lining up to secure Folau's services in 2016.

The 25-year-old was ready to sign with Parramatta prior to last season but backed out when the NRL refused to help get the deal over the line.

He subsequently signed with the Waratahs and is now arguably the hottest property in both codes.

Folau, who has overcome a leg injury and is a definite starter in Saturday's Super Rugby semi against the Brumbies, was typically coy when quizzed over his future.

"All that kind of off-field stuff I leave that up to my management team, they worry about that stuff," Folau said on Tuesday.

"For me I'm focusing on my job here with the Tahs and I'm really enjoying that."

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