Smith can cut it as No.6: Lewis - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Smith can cut it as No.6: Lewis

By Melissa Woods 06/04/2009 05:20:10 PM Comments (0)

League Immortal Wally Lewis knows a forward can be successfully fashioned into a five-eighth - after all, he made the transition himself.

Lewis says Melbourne's Test hooker Cameron Smith has all the attributes to become a top five-eighth, he just needs time.

Smith has had two starts in the halves for the Storm this season, allowing regular five-eighth Greg Inglis to move to his preferred position in the centres, with mixed results.

It was a raging success against North Queensland yet failed to penetrate Gold Coast's defence in Melbourne's shock 12-point home loss on Saturday.

Lewis, the former Australian and Queensland skipper and five-eighth in the ARL's team of the century, started his career in the forwards.

"A lot of people are suggesting that Cameron Smith being a five-eighth won't work," said Lewis, in Melbourne to launch the exhibition, League of Legends at the MCG's National sports Museum.

"I was a lock forward, No.13 in today's game so I ended up going back and playing at No.6.

"It took me a while to get used to it but I'm pretty comfortable with the way it worked out in the end.

"Cameron Smith's got enough skills that he can fill any position any where, any time.

"That can be an experiment that proves to be the right move by Craig Bellamy."

After proving a match-winner against the Cowboys, Inglis had a quiet game against the Titans, both in the centres and at five-eighth after shifting back after 30 minutes.

Lewis believed Inglis' inconsistency stemmed from his adjustment to his new bulk.

"I think probably one of the difficulties for him (Inglis) this year is just getting used to a bit of a change. He's a much bigger man, he's put on eight or 10 kilos.

"You've only got to look at his performance against the Cowboys and it was an absolute superstar performance.

"He's one of the game's greats and always will be, it's just a matter of getting used to things."

The former Queensland coach said he would have no problems including Inglis, as well as Smith, Billy Slater, and Dallas Johnson in any Maroons squad despite Melbourne's attack faltering.

"The form of Melbourne has been a little bit worrying but the individual form by all of those guys has been fantastic.

"While Greg Inglis hasn't excelled every week you've only got to look back one week to say, he's the bloke who won the game for them.

"When he put on a Queensland or Australian jersey I'm sure he'll be a superstar in that game."

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