Wallabies hoping for 'special' tour - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Wallabies hoping for 'special' tour

By Robin Millard 30/09/2008 07:22:06 PM Comments (0)

Primary playmaker Matt Giteau feels the new-look Wallabies may be on the verge of something special as they prepare for their first spring tour under new coach Robbie Deans.

The six-match campaign concludes with a game at Wembley Stadium against the famous Barbarians, a team Giteau has played for against New Zealand and South Africa, but has yet to oppose.

"It's an interesting tour, but having said that it's going to be a very enjoyable one, there's a lot of hard games ahead of us," Giteau said from the team camp in London.

"But I think the attitude among the boys is we feel like it's a good opportunity for us to play some good football away from home and hopefully we're on the verge of something special."

Primarily used at inside-centre by previous Wallaby coaches, Giteau has flourished this year as their full-time five-eighth and chief decision maker.

Giteau said it had been a big learning curve and his education was continuing.

"It's just something that I'm focusing on, just trying to get better each week, Giteau said.

"You learn a lot from your losses. I think that's where you learn the most, what you've done wrong and how to improve."

With fullback Chris Latham and long standing halves George Gregan and Stephen Larkham leaving the Wallabies over the last 12 months, Giteau has become one of the senior backs and has consciously tried to exhibit more leadership.

He said leadership naturally went hand-in-hand with being the backline director and being Force vice-captain had also given him experience in that area.

"It's something that I've tried to do, but it's certainly something I need to keep continually trying to work on, Giteau said.

"Just getting involved a little bit more in games and I suppose training and off the park, helping in any way I can to keep the group heading in the right direction."

Quizzed over whether he had any captaincy aspirations with the Wallabies, Giteau stressed it wasn't his decision to make and that there was a timing element.

"You don't really know when you're ready for it, it's something very unknown for me," Giteau said.

"I've captained one game for the Force and that's about it.

"Whether it's for me, it's not up for me to determine."

Speculation is already building about Giteau's future beyond his current contract with the Force, but he was adamant it would not prove a distraction.

"No, not at all, it's always been something that I've been reasonably good at, just to separate football from whatever else is going on," Giteau said.

He had no knowledge of reports emanating from Perth over alleged player dissatisfaction with Force coach John Mitchell.

"I didn't even know about it till I came in here," Giteau said.

Deans on Tuesday rated all four recuperating players, No.8 Wycliff Palu and backs Lote Tuqiri, Berrick Barnes and Luke Burgess, as likely to tour.

"They are certainly keen and you find when there's a will, they find a way," Deans said.

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