Rugby Union

Brumbies utility Robbie Coleman has chance to make fullback position his own

 ACT Brumbies utility Robbie Coleman has switched seamlessly between the wing and fullback whenever his Super Rugby province needs and now coach Stephen Larkham says he could find himself in a play-making role during the 2015 season.

But first, Coleman has the chance to make the No.15 jersey his own as Jesse Mogg continues his recovery from shoulder surgery.

ACT Brumbies player Robbie Coleman speaks to the media following training on Monday.
ACT Brumbies player Robbie Coleman speaks to the media following training on Monday. Photo: Jeffrey Chan

The Queanbeyan product spent most of the pre-season at fullback and, while Larkham has said all of his squad is available for selection to play the Queensland Reds at Canberra Stadium on Friday, he's favourite to be the man at the back for the Super Rugby season opener.

"Yeah he does have a really good opportunity," Larkham said of Coleman and the fullback role.

"He had a really good pre-season, in fact he had a really good [National Rugby Championship] where he played a lot at 10 and he's had a really good pre-season playing half of the first game at 10 and half at fullback and the second game a full 80 minutes at fullback."

When asked if there was a chance Coleman could play flyhalf or inside centre this year, Larkham simply said: "There is."

Coleman just wants to play and doesn't mind where that is.

The utility tag can be an unwelcome one for some, but he felt it made him a better player switching between roles.

"I played a few positions in the trials and trained all over the place in the pre-season, which was really good for my game," Coleman said.

"Me and Moggy have been training [at fullback] and he's looking really good as well, I think he's ahead of schedule.

"I'm not sure what [Larkham's] going to go with, but given that chance I'm going to relish it and hopefully make it my own."

Lock Sam Carter was unsure who he might have alongside him in the second row against the Reds and felt Rory Arnold, Tom Staniforth or Blake Enever could all slot in there.

But he did know Wallabies blindside flanker Scott Fardy would take over the lineout calling from the departed Ben Mowen.

It's an area he wants to work on  and incorporate into his own game as the Super Rugby season goes on.

"I don't think I'll be calling on Friday night, I think Fards will probably be calling," Carter said.

"I've done a little bit and obviously if Fards goes off it will be on me.

"It's something I'm hoping to develop over the year, but I'm focused more on my role within the team at the moment."

He said the season-opener against the Reds had been in the back of his mind for the last three or four weeks and he was desperate to get off to a winning start.

SUPER RUGBY ROUND ONE

Friday: ACT Brumbies v Queensland Reds, at Canberra Stadium, 7.40pm