Moore focus on mentoring in hooker's Reds return

Super Rugby
Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

Incoming Queensland Reds hooker Stephen Moore says he doesn’t see his relationship with Andrew Ready as a competitive one, but rather a chance to mentor a rising star.

Moore was back at Ballymore on Thursday doing some solo training ahead of his official return in January, ensuring he would be able to hit the ground running in 2017.

The Wallabies skipper said he was looking forward to working with Ready, who had a standout Super Rugby season for the Reds in 2016, with the knowledge Moore was coming in.

Andrew Ready was in top form for the Reds last year. Photo: Getty ImagesReds coach Nick Stiles has previously said Moore would not be given any guaranteed starting spot and the 33-year-old said he hadn’t contemplated the idea of being pitted against Ready next season.

“There's been a lot said about that, I haven't really thought about it like that, to be honest,” he said.

“My goal is to help Andrew become the best hooker he can be and that's the way I'm viewing it.

“I want to help him in all the different areas involved with playing hooker at this level. - Stephen Moore

“He's already done a lot of it, he had a great season this year, so I'm sure over the course of this season, every player in the squad will be involved a lot.”

Whatever the hooker rotation looks like, Moore is adamant he wants to make a strong impression as he returns to his first Super Rugby club, after some eight years in Canberra.

"I know I've been here before but it's very much a new environment for me and new players and I think I want to make sure I contribute from the get go,” he said.

“It's exciting having a lot of young players as well that have come through the Queensland system and part of my job will be helping those guys to reach their potential.”

George SmithOne player he won’t have much to teach is former Wallabies and Brumbies teammate George Smith, who Moore admitted he never expected to be lining up alongside again.

“I never thought that would happen and I don't think anyone did but it just happened and I think everyone's really excited to see George back in Super Rugby,” he said.

“If anyone's been watching him play in Japan, he's still a world class player, so he'll bring a lot to the team on and off the field.”

The Reds open their Super Rugby season against the Sharks in Brisbane on Friday February 24.

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