Australia’s new Prime Minister Kevin Rudd may be keeping his enemies close, retaining Gary Gray as Resource Minister despite Mr Gray criticising his courage and strength.

Mr Gray is one of just a few Labor frontbenchers still around after last Wednesday night’s dramatic power shift. He says he is now being "practical and pragmatic", and his “comments on Friday were heartfelt comments. They were made in the heat of anger and frustration," Mr Gray told ABC Radio.

It’s a sharp turnaround from last week, when Mr Gray accused Mr Rudd of spreading confusion and creating torment just to make headlines, also doubting his governing ability.

"I'm now in a situation where I have to accept the decision of my caucus. I have accepted that decision and I'm prepared to get on with the business of working as hard as I can to get the Government re-elected before the election, due in just a few weeks' time,” Gray said.