Arnold not shocked by third Test omission

Super Rugby
Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

Rory Arnold was not surprised by his third Test omission, in fact in many ways it’s been a blessing in disguise for the second rower.

The Brumbies lock, who started in the opening two Tests for the Wallabies against England, said he knew he wasn’t in Michael Cheika’s plans for every match.

“He said to me he was never going to play me in all three Tests,” he said.

“I was up for selection and I was a bit beaten up but we lost both games, he had to change something up and unfortunately changed the second row up again.

“It was an opportunity for the other guys to get a shot - Adam [Coleman] and Will [Skelton] got another go - so it's all good and hopefully I can get another opportunity later on in the year.”

With a clash against the Reds this Friday night, Arnold said he was feeling somewhat grateful for the mini-break.

“My body was quite beaten up,” he said.

“I had a bit of an AC problem, cork in the shoulder but I'm feeling quite fresh now and I'll have a good week and prepare well and hopefully we can get the job done on Friday.

Rory Arnold still bears the scars of a physical Test series. Photo: Getty ImagesArnold said the competition for second row spots will be even more heated as the year goes on, though he’ll get his first litmus test against World Cup lock Kane Douglas, who is set to return from injury for the Reds in their Friday night match.

“Last few years we were probably a bit thin in that department but now with Kane coming back to Australia and playing I think there's eight locks there that could easily step up and play,” he said.

“At the moment it's good for Australian rugby to have all those locks competing for that one spot.”

Arnold said while he still harboured disappointment after the Wallabies’ 3-0 series loss to England, his focus was now switched to

“It wasn't a good feeling and it's something I won't forget but I'm looking forward to getting back to winning ways at the Brumbies and I'm sure that it's not going to be easy the next three weeks but I'm sure we should go alright,” he said.

“We've got a few players back now I think so we're looking good for these next three weeks.”