Rugby Australia chief Andy Marinos hit back at New Zealand Rugby boss Mark Robinson and added more fuel to the war of words currently taking place across the Tasman, stating he doesn't believe NZR ever had any intention of playing the third Bledisloe Test on the 28th of August.
The verbal stoush was ignited on Friday when NZR announced through a press release that they would not be sending the All Blacks to Perth for the final Bledisloe match on Saturday as originally scheduled. In response to the announcement, Marinos said on Friday he'd been left disappointed to be informed via the media, while Wallabies coach Dave Rennie said he'd been left "bloody angry" by the decision.
While sympathetic, Robinson fired back on Saturday stating NZR had been in full consultation with RA throughout the week.
"We had calls right through from sort of Wednesday, Thursday; we put something in writing on Thursday, and then we spoke to them [Rugby Australia] before anything was released," Robinson told Newstalk ZB.
"I'd have thought there'd have been talking the days up to when this came a possibility, that there would have been communication within Rugby Australia to identify this as a possibility."
Speaking on Sports Sunday about the situation, Marinos didn't deny RA and NZR had been in consultation throughout the week, but stated NZR had put forth unrealistic deadlines that RA were still trying to work through before the governing body made the public statement.
"The context around all of this is that we had an emergency call the Thursday morning to try get clarity around the future structure with South Africa giving a very clear indication that they could host it," Marions said.
"So we had certainty that if we couldn't deliver it in Australia we could certainly go to South Africa as a fallback so to speak, but Mark [Robinson] and New Zealand Rugby put forward a pretty unrealistic deadline on us of 12pm for Friday.
"We had a further call to make the final decision and we were prepared to do that, though they were pretty adamant in terms of their decision, but at no stage during that time did he make any mention of the fact that he was going to be making a public statement and that's really what just completely blindsided all of us.
"They unilaterally discredited us, made a public statement before we even had an opportunity to further discuss. It was pretty clear to me I don't think they really ever had any intention of playing that game on the 28th."
Wallabies halfback Tate McDermott also weighed in on the situation, calling the decision by NZR not to send the All Blacks to Australia as "incredibly disappointing and frustrating".
"From the player's point of view I think I speak for everyone in the squad when I say this, it's incredibly disappointing and frustrating.
"Given our past two results against the Kiwis, you know we had a perfect chance to put on a good show to the Perth community over here and I guess rectify our results in those first two games.
"It's just so disappointing for the Perth community. The boys went out to club footy yesterday and just to see all the work that the Western Force and Rugby Australia are doing at grassroots level, I'm sure the game at Optus Stadium would have been the perfect spectacle for the code over here.
"That's probably the most frustrating part from the players, we could've put a good show on for the Perth community."
While South Africa have put their hand up to host the remaining Rugby Championship clashes, and Europe has even been mooted as a possibility of hosting the tournament, Marinos is still working with the West Australian government in the hopes of hosting the third Bledisloe clash at Optus Stadium in September.
"We're working hard now with the West Australian government and Optus stadium to see if we find new ways of getting it on the 4th of September. There's a lot of work that's being done in the last 24-48 hours; we remain optimistic and confident we can get the game away."