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Rugby: Rugby-Once prodigy Petaia gets his shot at fullback for Australia

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Rugby: Rugby-Once prodigy Petaia gets his shot at fullback for Australia

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Jordan Petaia was 19 when he made his debut for the Wallabies at the 2019 World Cup, scoring a strive with his second contact, however on Saturday he’ll lastly get his first begin at fullback in opposition to England at Brisbane’s Lang Park.

Now 22, Petaia received his probability due to accidents to Tom Banks and Andrew Kellaway however his coach and staff mates are satisfied that he’s able to play within the shirt lengthy thought-about his future.

“Physically, he is excellent,” captain Michael Hooper advised reporters at Brisbane’s Lang Park on Friday.

“When he is on fireplace, he is received the peak and the leap. He’s fairly a rangy mover, which makes him troublesome to deal with, and he is received all of the tips within the instrument equipment as effectively. He’s a whole bundle.”

James O’Connor was as soon as a prodigy himself after making his debut at the age of 18 and nervelessly changing his personal strive with the final kick of the sport to beat the All Blacks a few years later.

The 31-year-old, who will backup flyhalf Noah Lolesio from the bench on Saturday, mentioned he was a “massive fan” of his Queensland Reds staff mate.

“Once he gets his alternative to open up, I do not wish to be in opposition to him one-on-one,” O’Connor mentioned on Thursday. “(He) needs this one fairly badly, so let’s have a look at how he goes.”

Injuries to his nonetheless rising physique imply Petaia has performed solely 16 assessments, many off the bench, within the three years since his debut.

In final week’s first check in Perth, when England prodigy Henry Arundell caught the attention with a late cameo, Petaia got here off the bench to attain Australia’s first strive in a 30-28 victory.

“This is the perfect I’ve seen Jordy, he is bodily glorious,” coach Dave Rennie mentioned after naming his staff.

“He’s going to must boss the sport from again there and we predict he can do the job.”

(Reporting by Nick Mulvenney, modifying by Peter Rutherford)



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