Timana Tahu wants Waratahs centre job - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Timana Tahu wants Waratahs centre job

By David Beniuk 23/08/2008 10:52:56 AM Comments (0)

Dual international Timana Tahu says he "hated" being shunted between positions in his first season with the NSW Waratahs and is expecting to be the side's inside centre next year.

Tahu was used on the wing, occasionally at outside centre and off the bench in an injury disrupted maiden season of rugby under then Waratahs coach Ewen McKenzie.

But the former Newcastle and Parramatta NRL star was given a second chance to start his career in the 15-man game when new Wallabies coach Robbie Deans fast-tracked him into Australia A's No.12 jersey for the Pacific Nations Cup.

"During the season at the Waratahs I was sort of getting switched around and became a utility player which I hated at the time, but I've found my position now so I'm happy," Tahu said as the Wallabies arrived in Durban for the Tri-Nations Test against South Africa.

"I talked about it with Ewen McKenzie, playing 12, and he said I'm more of a 13 and a winger so I went on E's hunch and it didn't really suit the way I played.

"Robbie gave me a second chance to prove myself, playing at 12 as well.

"To get a second chance and play consistently in the Australia A side sort of gave me an opportunity to get into the Wallabies."

Tahu made the most of the opportunity to put his phenomenal talents to work closer to the action and went on to make a brief Test debut off the Wallabies bench in the victory over the All Blacks in Sydney last month.

He was named to play his second Test from the bench against the Springboks at ABSA Stadium.

Tahu hasn't spoken to new Waratahs coach Chris Hickey about his plans for 2009, but he is confident of forming an exciting combination with young gun Rob Horne, and having Deans in his corner won't hurt.

"I'm expecting to go back and play 12," Tahu said.

"It's up to Chris Hickey at the end of the day. Hopefully he does see me as a 12.

"As soon as Robbie said he wanted me to play 12 it was another challenge for me to see how good it was, and it was.

"It was a position that suits my style of game. You get in early with the ball, a lot more tackling, so I'm happy what I'm doing now.

"In rugby league you sort of sit on a channel on the left side where I used to play. You sit there and whatever the halfback and five-eighth said was religious.

"Whereas in rugby union Robbie's got me ball-playing, getting me to jump into 10 (five-eighth) sometimes and I do a lot of organising with the forwards and ball-playing as well. Plus you're not playing on one side of the field, you're playing everywhere."

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