Skelton on track for pre-season return

Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

Waratahs and Wallabies lock Will Skelton has his sights set on a pre-season return from the pectoral injury that ended his World Cup.

Skelton, who was injured in Australia’s pool game against Uruguay is still on limited duties at training but is hoping to return to full contact in the coming weeks in a bid to play in NSW’s February 6 match against the Brumbies.

That Skelton was able to begin his rehab with the Super Rugby season still four months away has given him the chance to ensure he is 100 per cent fit, he said.

“Two months post-surgery now (and) we’re not rushing," he said.

“Doing it that early in the tournament I thought I’d come home early and really get it sorted so I can be right for the Tahs,” he said,

“I’ve been training really hard with a few of the other injured boys at the Waratahs and our boys are really ripping in.

“It’s going to be a big season for us again next year and can’t wait to be a part of it.”

The chance to properly rehabilitate could be crucial for Skelton as he vies to mount a claim for a regular Wallabies lock spot in 2016.

With Kane Douglas likely to miss most of the Super Rugby season after rupturing his ACL, the June Test series against England could see another face in the match-day 23 alongside incumbents Rob Simmons and Dean Mumm.

While Skelton was Michael Cheika’s choice for the World Cup squad, the 23-year-old said he would be far from the only one in contention.

“Yeah I think (there’s an opportunity),” he said.

“I think there are a lot of locks around my age and guys on the fringes who can really step up. It’s not a bad thing.

“I think it’s a good thing that we have a lot of competition.

“Guys like Rory Arnold, Adam Coleman, Sam Lousi and Jed Holloway just at the Tahs.

“They’re really putting their hands up at training you see them really working hard and they’ve had big season this year.

“Competition brings the best out of us and if we bring the best players on the field for the Wallabies that’s all we can ask for.”

Skelton was at Gore Hill on Friday night, helping promote VIVA7s, a non-contact version of rugby union.