Australia's cricketers celebrated their Ashes triumph long and hard.

Inspirational: The Australian cricket team's Ashes triumph. Photo: Brendan Esposito

Wallabies coach Ewen McKenzie says his side could emulate the Australian cricket team, which rose from hitting rock bottom this time last year to being lauded after their recent Ashes victory over England.

McKenzie, who took over the Wallabies from Robbie Deans last July following their British and Irish Lions series loss, says the Wallabies are well positioned to resurrect their standing in the Australian public's eye after winning four of their five Tests in last year's spring tour.

Speaking on Wednesday at the ARU launch of the Super Rugby competition, McKenzie likened the challenge facing the Wallabies to that of the Australian cricket team before their Ashes win, saying: "There are a lot of good things going on. We saw that in cricket. Cricket was doom and gloom in April and May [last year]. Then six months later it is all rosy. That's the way it works.

''Things move fast in sport, so long as you push the right buttons. It can quickly go the other way, too. You have to keep on top of it to make sure that whatever you are doing has got substance and consistency around it."

McKenzie said he was excited that the first opponents for the Wallabies this year would be France, who have won their first two Six Nations games and are due to tour Australia for three Tests - in Brisbane on June 7, Melbourne on June 14 and in Sydney on June 21.

McKenzie conceded that his first three months as the Wallabies coach had been difficult. Under him, they have won half of their Tests. His reign started badly with three losses to the All Blacks and two to South Africa, before two wins over Argentina. Then in the spring tour the Wallabies lost to England but finished strongly to beat Italy, Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

But hanging over the side was the Dublin controversy during the spring tour when McKenzie disciplined 15 players - six of who were suspended for one Test - for staying out late in the week before the Test against Ireland.

"When I started, we had to play the All Blacks. I had a squad of 40 and probably half the guys I had barely met. It was a difficult start," McKenzie said of his first months. "We went through some issues about what the standards are about being a Wallaby. Some things have become more evident, but in the end the team showed some good character, resolve and skills. We will build on that."

Asked if he felt the Dublin controversy may still worry some Wallabies fans, McKenzie said: "I knew that if we beat Wales [in the final spring tour Test] they would focus on the fact we had won four of the five [Tests] and that they would be excited by the next game of rugby.

''Thankfully, the next game is in Super Rugby. They are going to be out watching the same players … The intentions of the [Australian] sides are all pretty expressive, so they [should] get good value for turning up. Hopefully on that we get to continue on our success when we play France. If they come as Six Nations champions, that would be terrific.''