Wallabies' backline given licence to rove - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Wallabies' backline given licence to rove

Adrian Warren 19/07/2011 07:21:40 PM Comments (0)

Australia's three potent backline stars are relishing the prospect of being reunited with a roving commission for Saturday's Tri Nations opener against South Africa.

Five-eighth Quade Cooper and winger James O'Connor missed Sunday's loss to Samoa, after being rested and injured respectively, while fullback Kurtley Beale played just a cameo role off the bench.

The three quick-stepping backs have licence to roam, with O'Connor expected to pop up at inside centre on occasions and Beale at first receiver.

"Having guys like Quade running the show creates more space out wide, so there's no doubt I will be looking for some inside balls and trying to get in that second ball receiver," O'Connor told reporters on Tuesday.

"The understanding is the same as last year. I've got a licence to roam around the field. Obviously at times, you need the whole width," O'Connor said.

"Hopefully, there will be parts of the game when we are on front-foot attacking ball. I will be sniffing around Quade and Kurtley and looking for some opportunities there."

Beale, who started his senior rugby career at five-eighth, will get his turn at first receiver on Saturday at ANZ Stadium.

"Like James (O'Connor) has alluded to, I've got a licence to come and step up and have a crack," Beale said.

Cooper said it wasn't hard for the three of them to slot back together despite not having played as a unit since last year.

All three are goalkickers, but O'Connor has landed the job this week.

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