Date: May 12 2012
A successful stint in Europe and Japan has convinced Peter Hewat he is returning to Super Rugby a more complete player than when he left five years ago.
Point-scoring machine Hewat is on the verge of signing a deal with the ACT Brumbies to help cover the loss of Christian Lealiifano and Matt Toomua to season-ending injuries.
He was due to return to Japan next weekend to begin pre-season training with Suntory, but he could join his teammates as early as tomorrow if the Brumbies get the required approvals for him to play.
The Brumbies need to get insurance and clearance from Suntory and the ARU for his short-term deal for the remainder of the season.
Hewat made his mark in Super Rugby for the NSW Waratahs and had an uncanny knack of scoring intercept tries.
He scored 365 points in his three seasons with the Waratahs, but after stints with London Irish and Suntory, Hewat said he was returning to Australia a different player.
''A return to Super Rugby is always in the back of your mind when you're watching it on television even when you're overseas,'' Hewat said.
''I think I'm coming back more complete … you learn different things along the way.
''I'm probably not as flashy as I was, but some say that's a good thing.
''The older you get you don't look for the big plays as much, you just do the harder things and understand what is expected of you rather than coming out to take 10 intercepts.
''I've definitely learnt new aspects of the game to become a more rounded player and I'm coming back in better shape as well.''
Hewat has been back in Australia for the past month on holiday after the end of the Japanese season.
The idea of joining the Brumbies was floated by Suntory general manager and former ACT coach Eddie Jones after Lealiifano broke his ankle last weekend.
With Lealiifano and Matt Toomua out injured, Brumbies coach Jake White is searching for a new flyhalf.
Hewat, Robbie Coleman and Zack Holmes are all in contention to fill the No.10 jersey in the coming weeks.
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