JavaScript disabled. Please enable JavaScript to use My News, My Clippings, My Comments and user settings.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

World Cup dreams prompt Gill's 'non merci' to French clubs

Liam Gill turned back advanced from France to give himself a shot for selection at next year's World Cup.

Liam Gill turned back advanced from France to give himself a shot for selection at next year's World Cup. Photo: Franck Fife

Reds flanker Liam Gill spurned the advances of French rugby clubs to chase his dream of being Australia's first-choice openside in the 2015 Rugby World Cup.

The intriguing tussle for the Wallaby number seven jumper continues this weekend when Gill goes head-to-head with the man who has usurped him in the national pecking order, Waratah Michael Hooper.

Add the resuming David Pocock back into the equation and three doesn't go into one, ensuring there's a heightened focus each time two of the trio square off in an Australian derby.

Gill, who has 42 caps for the Reds at the age of 21, came to Ballymore as a schoolboy star in 2011 and quickly established himself as an elite competitor on the side of the scrum.

He rocketed into Wallaby calculations but it was Hooper that started in all five Tests on the Spring Tour, with Gill out of Ewen McKenzie's squad altogether for three of the matches.

Gill will remain with the Reds until 2015 but said there was interest from French rugby for his services. Instead, he returned to his native Queensland and has backed his ability to try and win the race to become McKenzie's first-choice ball hound.

"I was in touch with them [French clubs]. But I was more than happy to stay with the Reds and Australian rugby. I just backed myself to give it a shot," Gill said.

"I really do back myself to make it at Australian level and that's where I want to end up. I want to make sure I give myself that chance."

Hooper's running game stands out, as does Pocock's strength over the ball. But Gill is hoping his all-around package can help him rise to the top in what may be the most-competitive spot in the Wallaby starting side.

He concedes he has it all ahead of him, given Hooper's form for both NSW and the Wallabies, and wants to stamp his authority in the Super Rugby rounds. Against the Waratahs, that spotlight intensifies.

"I've still got a lot to prove. They've both been ahead of me in the pecking order and that has been the case. There's a lot that I need to go out and prove. That's what I set out to do. It's Super Rugby where I can show what I can do and influence the game," Gill said.

There's never a media conference where Gill isn't questioned about his battles with Hooper - and now Pocock - but he doesn't view his Wallaby aspirations through the prism of one-on-one conflicts.

If the Reds are winning, he says, the path towards selection suddenly becomes a whole lot smoother.

"If the team wins, it's so much easier. That's where everyone's head is at. They talk about individual battles but if the team gets up, that's enough said," Gill said.

The Waratahs sent up some impressive smoke signals with their romp over the Western Force but Gill said the Reds travel to Sydney full of confidence after knocking over the Brumbies in Canberra.

Winning two games on the road against their biggest Australian rivals would be a massive boost for Queensland before their first home game of the season against the Cheetahs.

"There's a lot of excitement here. Putting together a big win like that first up was really big. We didn't beat them [the Brumbies] last year," Gill said.

"That gives us a lot of confidence. It puts a fair bit of fire in the belly to try and keep that rolling."

3 comments

  • I really like Liam Gill and rate him very highly, but providing Pocock is fit, come world cup anyone would be hard pressed to get picked over him.

    Commenter
    Sammmmm
    Location
    Brisbane
    Date and time
    February 26, 2014, 8:03AM
    • Except Hooper

      Commenter
      Nic
      Location
      Tahland
      Date and time
      February 27, 2014, 8:08AM
  • I too rate Liam Gill and he has been unfortunate not to be given a big enough chance to stake his claim. However, think of it this way: the hype is behind Pocock, who is an exception player: big and strong over the ball, but at this stage he is injury prone and needs to survive this Super Rugby season with strong consistent form while stayijg relatively healthy. The same can be said for Scott Higginbotham, whose overall worth ethic and leadership i also rate highly. If Gill keeps playing well and is fortunate enough to have either of these players fall under an injury cloud then he is a perfect player to sit in the bench/start and become an immediate impact. While Liam Gill may not be the most effective runner his strength is racking up tackles and pilfering the ball against tired oppositions. He is quick and strong.
    His decision to stay in Australia is a smart one. French rugby clubs will be there for the next 100 years so I say great call on staying here and keeping our depth at flanker strong.

    Commenter
    Mattty
    Date and time
    February 27, 2014, 9:51AM
    Comments are now closed

    Super Rugby 2015

    Round 1
    Fri, 13 FebTimes shown AEDT
    CRU 10vs REB 20 Report Stats
    BRU 47vs RED 3 Stats
    Sat, 14 FebTimes shown AEDT
    LIO 8vs HUR 22 Report Stats
    BLU 18vs CHF 23 Report Stats
    Sun, 15 FebTimes shown AEDT
    SHA 29vs CHT 35 Report Stats
    BUL 17vs STO 29 Report Stats
    WAR 13vs FOR 25 Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 2
    Fri, 20 FebTimes shown AEDT
    CHF 19vs BRU 17 Report Stats
    REB 28vs WAR 38 Report Stats
    Sat, 21 FebTimes shown AEDT
    BUL 13vs HUR 17 Report Stats
    HIG 20vs CRU 26 Report Stats
    RED 18vs FOR 6 Report Stats
    Sun, 22 FebTimes shown AEDT
    STO 27vs BLU 16 Report Stats
    SHA 29vs LIO 12 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 3
    Fri, 27 FebTimes shown AEDT
    HIG 20vs RED 13 Report Stats
    FOR 13vs HUR 42 Stats
    Sat, 28 FebTimes shown AEDT
    CHT 25vs BLU 24 Report Stats
    CHF 40vs CRU 16 Stats
    REB 15vs BRU 20 Report Stats
    Sun, 01 MarTimes shown AEDT
    BUL 43vs SHA 35 Report Stats
    LIO 19vs STO 22 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 4
    Fri, 06 MarTimes shown AEDT
    CHF 17vs HIG 20 Report Stats
    BRU 27vs FOR 15 Report Stats
    Sat, 07 MarTimes shown AEDT
    BLU 10vs LIO 13 Report Stats
    RED 5vs WAR 23 Report Stats
    Sun, 08 MarTimes shown AEDT
    CHT 20vs BUL 39 Report Stats
    STO 29vs SHA 13 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 5
    Fri, 13 MarTimes shown AEDT
    HUR 30vs BLU 23 Report Stats
    FOR 17vs REB 21 Report Stats
    Sat, 14 MarTimes shown AEDT
    CRU 34vs LIO 6 Report Stats
    HIG 26vs WAR 19 Report Stats
    RED 0vs BRU 29 Stats
    Sun, 15 MarTimes shown AEDT
    STO 19vs CHF 28 Report Stats
    CHT 10vs SHA 27 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 6
    Fri, 20 MarTimes shown AEDT
    HIG 13vs HUR 20 Report Stats
    REB 16vs LIO 20 Report Stats
    Sat, 21 MarTimes shown AEDT
    CRU 57vs CHT 14 Report Stats
    Sun, 22 MarTimes shown AEDT
    BUL 25vs FOR 24 Report Stats
    SHA 12vs CHF 11 Report Stats
    WAR 28vs BRU 13 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 7
    Fri, 27 MarTimes shown AEDT
    HUR 36vs REB 12 Report Stats
    RED 17vs LIO 18 Report Stats
    Sat, 28 MarTimes shown AEDT
    CHF 37vs CHT 27 Report Stats
    HIG 39vs STO 21 Report Stats
    WAR 23vs BLU 11 Report Stats
    Sun, 29 MarTimes shown AEDT
    SHA 15vs FOR 9 Report Stats
    BUL 31vs CRU 19 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 8
    Fri, 03 AprTimes shown AEDT
    HUR 25vs STO 20 Report Stats
    REB 23vs RED 15 Report Stats
    Sat, 04 AprTimes shown AEDT
    CHF 23vs BLU 16 Report Stats
    BRU 20vs CHT 3 Report Stats
    Sun, 05 AprTimes shown AEDT
    SHA 10vs CRU 52 Report Stats
    LIO 22vs BUL 18 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 9
    Fri, 10 AprTimes shown AEST
    BLU 16vs BRU 14 Report Stats
    Sat, 11 AprTimes shown AEST
    CRU 20vs HIG 25 Report Stats
    WAR 18vs STO 32 Report Stats
    FOR 15vs CHT 24 Report Stats
    Sun, 12 AprTimes shown AEST
    LIO 23vs SHA 21 Report Stats
    BUL 43vs RED 22 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 10
    Fri, 17 AprTimes shown AEST
    CRU 9vs CHF 26 Report Stats
    Sat, 18 AprTimes shown AEST
    HUR 24vs WAR 29 Report Stats
    HIG 30vs BLU 24 Report Stats
    BRU 8vs REB 13 Report Stats
    FOR 6vs STO 13 Report Stats
    Sun, 19 AprTimes shown AEST
    SHA 10vs BUL 17 Report Stats
    CHT 17vs RED 18 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 11
    Fri, 24 AprTimes shown AEST
    CHF 35vs FOR 27 Report Stats
    BRU 31vs HIG 18 Report Stats
    Sat, 25 AprTimes shown AEST
    CRU 29vs BLU 15 Report Stats
    WAR 18vs REB 16 Report Stats
    Sun, 26 AprTimes shown AEST
    LIO 34vs CHT 29 Report Stats
    STO 15vs BUL 13 Report Stats
    RED 19vs HUR 35 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 12
    Fri, 01 MayTimes shown AEST
    HIG 48vs SHA 15 Report Stats
    BRU 10vs WAR 13 Report Stats
    Sat, 02 MayTimes shown AEST
    BLU 41vs FOR 24 Report Stats
    HUR 29vs CRU 23 Report Stats
    REB 16vs CHF 15 Report Stats
    Sun, 03 MayTimes shown AEST
    CHT 25vs STO 17 Report Stats
    BUL 35vs LIO 33 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 13
    Fri, 08 MayTimes shown AEST
    CRU 58vs RED 17 Report Stats
    REB 42vs BLU 22 Report Stats
    Sat, 09 MayTimes shown AEST
    HUR 32vs SHA 24 Report Stats
    FOR 18vs WAR 11 Report Stats
    LIO 28vs HIG 23 Report Stats
    Sun, 10 MayTimes shown AEST
    STO 25vs BRU 24 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 14
    Fri, 15 MayTimes shown AEST
    BLU 23vs BUL 18 Report Stats
    RED 46vs REB 29 Report Stats
    Sat, 16 MayTimes shown AEST
    HUR 22vs CHF 18 Report Stats
    WAR 33vs SHA 18 Report Stats
    Sun, 17 MayTimes shown AEST
    LIO 20vs BRU 30 Report Stats
    CHT 24vs HIG 45 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 15
    Fri, 22 MayTimes shown AEST
    CHF 34vs BUL 20 Report Stats
    RED 14vs SHA 21 Report Stats
    Sat, 23 MayTimes shown AEST
    BLU 5vs HUR 29 Report Stats
    WAR 32vs CRU 22 Report Stats
    FOR 3vs HIG 23 Report Stats
    Sun, 24 MayTimes shown AEST
    CHT 17vs LIO 40 Report Stats
    STO 31vs REB 15 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 16
    Fri, 29 MayTimes shown AEST
    CRU 35vs HUR 18 Report Stats
    BRU 22vs BUL 16 Report Stats
    Sat, 30 MayTimes shown AEST
    SHA 25vs REB 21 Report Stats
    HIG 36vs CHF 9 Report Stats
    FOR 10vs RED 32 Report Stats
    Sun, 31 MayTimes shown AEST
    STO 42vs CHT 12 Report Stats
    LIO 27vs WAR 22 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 17
    Fri, 05 JunTimes shown AEST
    HUR 56vs HIG 20 Report Stats
    FOR 20vs BRU 33 Report Stats
    Sat, 06 JunTimes shown AEST
    REB 21vs BUL 20 Report Stats
    BLU 11vs CRU 34 Report Stats
    RED 3vs CHF 24 Report Stats
    CHT 33vs WAR 58 Report Stats
    Sun, 07 JunTimes shown AEST
    STO 19vs LIO 19 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 18
    Fri, 12 JunTimes shown AEST
    BLU 7vs HIG 44 Report Stats
    REB 11vs FOR 13 Report Stats
    Sat, 13 JunTimes shown AEST
    BRU 24vs CRU 37 Report Stats
    CHF 13vs HUR 21 Report Stats
    WAR 31vs RED 5 Report Stats
    Sun, 14 JunTimes shown AEST
    BUL 29vs CHT 42 Report Stats
    SHA 34vs STO 12 Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Super Rugby Qualifying Finals
    Sat, 20 JunTimes shown AEST
    HIG 24vs CHF 14 Report Stats
    Sun, 21 JunTimes shown AEST
    STO 19vs BRU 39 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Super Rugby Semi Finals
    Sat, 27 JunTimes shown AEST
    HUR 29vs BRU 9 Stats
    WAR 17vs HIG 35 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Super Rugby Grand Final
    Sat, 04 JulTimes shown AEST
    HUR 14vs HIG 21 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Super Rugby 2015
    Overall standings
    Team P W L D +/- Pts
    Hurricanes 16 14 2 0 170 66
    Waratahs 16 11 5 0 96 52
    Stormers 16 10 5 1 50 45
    Highlanders 16 11 5 0 117 53
    Brumbies 16 9 7 0 108 47
    Lions 16 9 6 1 -22 42
    Chiefs 16 10 6 0 73 48
    Bulls 16 7 9 0 9 38
    View all
     

    Follow Us on Facebook

    Featured advertisers