Robby Deans dropped for Ewan McKenzie

ROBBIE Deans' six-year tenure as coach of the Wallabies is over.

After a lengthy meeting yesterday, the Australian Rugby Union released the former All Black from his contract six months early.

Former Queensland Reds mentor Ewan McKenzie will take the coaching role to steer Australia to the World Cup in 2015.

The former Wallabies prop was expected to be confirmed as the new coach today after fighting off a challenge from Brumbies coach Jake White for the top job.

Deans presided over 74 of Australia's 554 Test matches since joining the Wallabies in 2008 with a reputation as one of the world's top leaders after taking the Crusaders to Super Rugby titles in 2000, 2002, 2005, 2006 and 2008, and finals appearances in 2003 and 2004.

He led Australia to 43 wins, 29 losses and two draws, for a winning percentage of 58 per cent.

But it appears that Saturday's 41-16 thumping at the hands of the British and Irish Lions was the final straw for the ARU.