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Higginbotham regrets missing tour

Date

Stathi Paxinos

Scott Higginbotham of the Wallabies.

Scott Higginbotham of the Wallabies. Photo: Getty Images

SUSPENDED Australian loose forward Scott Higginbotham yesterday said he regretted his actions in kneeing and head-butting New Zealand captain Richie McCaw with the few moments of poor judgment keeping him from the European tour his Wallaby teammates will leave for tomorrow.

Melbourne Rebels recruit Higginbotham was banned for two games after the incidents in the Bledisloe Cup in Brisbane earlier this month. The suspension, which meant Higginbotham would only be available for the final Tests against Italy and Wales, forced Wallabies coach Robbie Deans to omit him from the Australian squad.

''I'd be silly if I said I didn't regret it,'' Higginbotham said.

''That would be like saying I didn't care about going on the spring tour. Obviously, if I didn't do what I did, I'd probably be happily waiting to head into Sydney and get myself ready to head over to Europe.

''It's disappointing in that regard, but I guess the positive to take out of it is that I'm not just jumping in the deep end in January with the Rebels. I get to meet all the guys and get a decent whack of pre-season in over the next month or so.''

Higginbotham, who took part in his first training session with the squad after arriving in Melbourne on Sunday night, said he was happy to play at blindside breakaway with the Rebels, which would allow incumbent No. 8 Gareth Delve to remain in the position where he has so impressed during the past two seasons.

''With the Reds there was an opportunity to play No. 8 and it was something I hadn't done much of,'' Higginbotham said.

''I think at Super Rugby level it doesn't matter too much whether you play six [blindside breakaway] or eight, it's quite similar but when you get up to national standard there's is a fair difference and playing six I'd much prefer at that level.

''I think going into a Lions tour and everything next year and with Gareth Delve doing such a good job at eight and being such a good player … I'm more than happy to play six.''

At 195 centimetres tall and weighing 110 kilograms, Higginbotham is no lightweight, but he was surprised by the size of some of the Melbourne players such as skipper Delve and locks Cadeyrn Neville and Hugh Pyle.

''Blokes down here … there are some big boys. Being with the Reds previously we were a small pack.

''We were a good team but there are a lot of solid boys [here] and a lot of stuff to look forward to.''

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Sat, 19 SepTimes shown AEST
ENG 0vs FJI 0 05:00Twic
TGA 0vs GEO 0 21:00Kholm
IRE 0vs CAN 0 23:30MilS
Sun, 20 SepTimes shown AEST
SAF 0vs JPN 0 01:45Brig
FRA 0vs ITA 0 05:00Twic
SAM 0vs USA 0 21:00Brig
WAL 0vs URU 0 23:30MilS
Mon, 21 SepTimes shown AEST
NZL 0vs ARG 0 01:45Wemb
Wed, 23 SepTimes shown AEST
SCO 0vs JPN 0 23:30Kholm
Thu, 24 SepTimes shown AEST
AUS 0vs FJI 0 01:45MilS
FRA 0vs ROM 0 05:00Olym
Fri, 25 SepTimes shown AEST
NZL 0vs NAM 0 05:00Olym
Sat, 26 SepTimes shown AEST
ARG 0vs GEO 0 01:45Kholm
ITA 0vs CAN 0 23:30Ella
Sun, 27 SepTimes shown AEST
SAF 0vs SAM 0 01:45Villa
ENG 0vs WAL 0 05:00Twic
AUS 0vs URU 0 21:00Villa
SCO 0vs USA 0 23:30Ella
Mon, 28 SepTimes shown AEST
IRE 0vs ROM 0 01:45Wemb
Wed, 30 SepTimes shown AEST
TGA 0vs NAM 0 01:45Sand
Fri, 02 OctTimes shown AEST
WAL 0vs FJI 0 01:45MilS
FRA 0vs CAN 0 05:00stadium:mk
Sat, 03 OctTimes shown AEST
NZL 0vs GEO 0 05:00MilS
SAM 0vs JPN 0 23:30stadium:mk
Sun, 04 OctTimes shown AEST
SAF 0vs SCO 0 01:45St James' Park
ENG 0vs AUS 0 06:00Twic
Mon, 05 OctTimes shown AEDT
ARG 0vs TGA 0 00:30KPS
IRE 0vs ITA 0 02:45Olym
Wed, 07 OctTimes shown AEDT
CAN 0vs ROM 0 02:45KPS
FJI 0vs URU 0 06:00stadium:mk
Thu, 08 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 0vs USA 0 02:45Olym
NAM 0vs GEO 0 06:00Sand
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NZL 0vs TGA 0 06:00St James' Park
Sun, 11 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAM 0vs SCO 0 00:30St James' Park
AUS 0vs WAL 0 02:45Twic
ENG 0vs URU 0 06:00Manch
ARG 0vs NAM 0 22:00KPS
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ITA 0vs ROM 0 00:30Sand
FRA 0vs IRE 0 02:45MilS
USA 0vs JPN 0 06:00Kholm
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Sun, 18 OctTimes shown AEDT
WinB 0vs RUpA 0 02:00Twic
WinC 0vs RUpD 0 06:00MilS
WinD 0vs RUpC 0 23:00MilS
Mon, 19 OctTimes shown AEDT
WinA 0vs RUpB 0 02:00Twic
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WQF1 0vs WQF2 0 02:00Twic
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WQF3 0vs WQF4 0 03:00Twic
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Canada 0 0 0 0 0 0
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Japan 0 0 0 0 0 0
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England 0 0 0 0 0 0
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Rugby World Cup 2015
Overall standings
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Australia 0 0 0 0 0 0
USA 0 0 0 0 0 0
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Overall standings
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