Michael Clarke backs Beale's leadership

by RUGBY.com.au staff

A prominent sporting leader had high praise for Wallabies back Kurtley Beale this week, in the lead up to the Sydney to Hobart Yacht race.

Former Australia cricket captain Michael Clarke was glowing in his endorsement of Beale as the pair prepare to sail Perpetual Loyal next week.

”KB will be brilliant, he's a great fellow, so fit, so athletic," Clarke told AAP.

"He'll play a big part on the boat and he's the right personality as well.

"All the guys love him."

Beale’s leadership qualities have been praised by Waratahs and Wallabies staff alike in recent months, as the 26-year-old worked to shake off a tumultuous period in his career.

He capped off the season with a superb Rugby World Cup campaign and will return to Waratahs training in January.

Beale said he would be ready for a more defined leadership or mentoring role in coming seasons, with a number of Waratahs veterans heading overseas.

"I'm at the time of my career where I've gained a lot of knowledge of the game and if I can guide a lot of the young guys coming through with the knowledge I've gained, that's awesome," Beale told AAP.

"I think it's only natural that guys like myself, Bernard Foley, Rob Horne and Nick Phipps are all looking to fit into those positions.

"It's our time now to lead and provide a really good support system in

helping the whole squad and the coaching staff get another premiership.

"We're going to lose a lot of senior players, so it's important the middle guys from this year have got to step up to those important roles for next year."