Sheehan, Dunning eye Wallabies return - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Sheehan, Dunning eye Wallabies return

By Justin Chadwick 02/07/2009 02:20:47 PM Comments (0)

They say a move can be as good as a holiday, but Western Force recruits Brett Sheehan and Matt Dunning can't wait to get back to work.

Sheehan was a frustrated man last season at the Waratahs as Wallaby Luke Burgess took command at scrumhalf.

But Sheehan's plight was nothing compared to Dunning, who spent the entire Super 14 season on the sidelines after snapping his Achilles tendon while playing for the Wallabies last year.

Both players are desperate to get back into the Wallabies fold and believe their switch to the Force will help their cause.

Sheehan, 29, has just three Test caps to his name but said greater exposure at the Force would give him a chance of adding to that tally.

"It was frustrating at times with Luke but that's selection, that's the way it goes," Sheehan said on Thursday.

"You've just got to deal with it and when you do get on the field just make the most of the opportunities.

"I'm just looking forward to playing some good footy and getting on the park and hopefully my name gets thrown up there for the Wallabies again.

"It's a motivation. It's always disappointing missing out on the squad."

Dunning, a veteran of 43 Tests, said his body was feeling good after making a successful return to club rugby.

The 30-year-old notched 99 State caps for NSW but felt his future would be better served at the Force.

"Obviously there was five of us there at the Waratahs vying for three spots every week and I was off contract and the Force seemed like an attractive move for me," Dunning said.

"I'm keen to get back into the Wallabies squad as soon as possible.

"It was always going to be hard to make the Tri-Nations squad but I'm aiming to get back on the end of season tour and do well for the Wallabies."

The acquisition of Dunning, Tim Fairbrother, Nic Henderson plus the retention of Wallaby Pek Cowan leaves the Force brimming with front-row depth.

"There's a lot of depth there, a lot of experience and a lot of raw talent," Dunning said.

"I think the pack itself stands up to any Super 14 pack.

"It's as good as any, if not better."

Sheehan said he was looking forward to building a relationship with former Springbok five-eighth Andre Pretorius, who was signed as the Force's international marquee player.

"He's an experienced player and his form showed this year for the Lions he's still a great player and a brilliant player," Sheehan said.

"From a backline point of view he'll control things really well."

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