Goromaru recruitment 'not a mistake'

Super Rugby
Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

He’s played just 176 minutes of rugby this season and has been left out altogether this week but the Queensland Reds say it wasn’t a mistake to recruit Ayumu Goromaru.

The Japanese Test star was brought over to Ballymore amid some of the greatest preseason hype of any recruit but has been barely used since the season started.

Goromaru has dropped off the bench, replaced by Junior Laloifi for the Reds’ clash against the Crusaders but Reds co-coach Matt O’Connor said his signing wasn’t a mistake.

“I wouldn't say it was a mistake,” he said.

“It’s about making sure we had a quality goal kicker in the squad given the losses of Quade (Cooper) and James O’Connor last year.

“Thankfully Jake’s (McIntyre) stepped up and done that for us.

“We brought him in to give us a quality body to kick goals and thankfully the way the season’s gone and K’s (Hunt) playing very well at fullback and Jake’s kicking his goals.

“He understood that when he came in. He’s working hard on his game to play better and it’s one game.” 

Campbell Magnay will bring some brute force back to the Reds. Photo: Getty ImagesBoom youngster Campbell Magnay will have a baptism of fire in the absence of Samu Kerevi (hand) but scrumhalf Nick Frisby said the side backed the youngster to step up.

“Big shoes to fill,” he said.

“We’ve got every confidence in Campbell that he’ll do the job.

“He’s been a standout for the 20s. He’s got a big body, brings a lot of enthusiasm, loves the physicality so I’m sure he'll be fine.

Queensland will have the added bulk of returning winger Chris Feauai-Sautia to add some reassurance for Magnay as well, though Frisby doesn’t think he’ll need it.

“Don't think he’ll be nervous, knowing Campbell. He’s a typical young kid - non-fussed about everything so he’ll be going about his business as usual,” he sad.

Frisby will notch up his 50th match against the Crusaders, in what is set to be one of the toughest challenges of the year.

“It’s been a long time coming for me,” he said.

“In my fifth season now. I Remember the first one like it was yesterday so to now play 50 for Queensland is a massive honour and I'm looking forward to it.”

The Reds haven’t won in Christchurch since 1999 and travel to face a team that has the depth to keep five All Blacks on its bench.