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Cross-code help backed by Campese


Chris Dutton, Lee Gaskin

Raiders captain Terry Campese, right, would love to work more closely with Brumbies stars like Christian Lealiifano, left.

Raiders captain Terry Campese, right, would love to work more closely with Brumbies stars like Christian Lealiifano, left.

CANBERRA RAIDERS captain Terry Campese wants to break down cross-code barriers, urging the Raiders and Brumbies to train regularly together as they strive to reach the top of their respective competitions.

Just days after the NRL blocked Danny Buderus from joining the Brumbies as a consultant coach, Campese declared his desire to have the Raiders train with the Super Rugby side on a regular basis.

The Brumbies attempted to recruit Buderus, despite the champion hooker still playing NRL with the Newcastle Knights next season.

Just hours after he was unveiled at Brumbies headquarters, the NRL stepped in and refused to allow the deal to go ahead because Buderus would have been promoting a rival code.

But Campese has floated the idea of training with the Brumbies and believes the Raiders halves could benefit from working with the Super Rugby playmakers.

''I'd love to go and work with [Brumbies playmakers] Matt Toomua and Christian Lealiifano once a week or whenever it fits into the schedules,'' Campese said.

''I think it would benefit everyone and I honestly think between our club and the Brumbies, we should be trying to help each other out.

''We're a two-team town, we could pick up some things off the Brumbies and they could work on some things from us. I think it would be great to help each other to try to improve so we can be the best in our respective competitions.''

Seeing Buderus in a Brumbies training shirt angered rugby league officials. Interim NRL chief executive Shane Mattiske said on Thursday: ''The announcement which saw Danny at a press conference in another code's training gear underlines potential issues.''

Mattiske said the NRL was not stamping out co-operation between the codes, playing down media reporting of Melbourne Storm star Cooper Cronk training with the Brisbane Lions AFL club.

The Australian halfback is in Arizona learning kicking skills from the Lions, and appears on a video wearing a Brisbane Lions training shirt featuring their sponsors.

''This is a different matter,'' Mattiske said on Saturday.

''We're talking about the difference between being employed by another code versus a player training and sharing ideas with another team.

''It's not unusual for the transfer of skills between sports, it's been happening for some time.

''There's a significant difference between doing that and being employed in a role with another code.

''The fact Cooper is wearing the jersey of another team, we don't believe it's a deliberate attempt by Cooper to promote their sport, just something that's happened as part of the training session.''

Brumbies coach Jake White wants to ensure his team's rapid development continues.

Recruiting Buderus was part of a plan to make the Brumbies more dominant when tackling and when carrying the ball over the advantage line.

White has worked with AFL guru Kevin Sheedy, Melbourne Storm mentor Craig Bellamy and Australian cricket coach Mickey Arthur since taking over the Brumbies.

Brumbies lock Scott Fardy would be willing to work with the Raiders if the teams could agree on a program.

''We'll do anything to make us better and help us improve, and that includes going to any different sport to help,'' Fardy said.

''All of that is great for us and Jake has shown he's willing to look outside the box and that's what we're about.''

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