Debreczeni flourishing at fullback

Super Rugby
by Sam Phillips

After a slow start to 2017, Jack Debreczeni is flourishing at fullback for the Melbourne Rebels.

Debreczeni has been a staple at flyhalf over the last two years but with the arrival of rookie playmaker Jackson Garden-Bachop, Debreczeni has made a permanent move behind the defensive line.

The 23-year-old has been a flyhalf since his days at Trinity Grammar and West Harbour in the Shute Shield and admits the move has held its challenges.

But as Melbourne's forwards have provided better ball for their backs in the last two weeks, Debreczeni has asserted himself on the game with the nous of a player that grew up playing with the number 15 on his back.

Debreczeni has relished the challenge of a permanent move to fullback. Photo: Getty Images"There's a bit to learn at the back, a bit more time to think but I'm enjoying it," he said.

"Slowly over the last four weeks I'm trying to adjust to different roles that 15 possesses.

"I'm just trying to find my way along our patterning and when to inject myself, while also trying to help Jackson out as much as possible.

"Rather than a distributor you're more of a front line runner and you're running those hard lines or running the lines for inside balls."

Debreczeni is flanked by two Fijian flyers in the back three in Sefa Naivalu and Marika Koroibete, two powerful weapons that he is trying to link with as much as possible.Debreczeni says morale is high in the tight knit Rebels squad. Photo: Getty Images"Most of my job is trying to get them the ball, watch them run and try and support," he said.

"I thought I might pick up a bit of Fijian so I could speak to them in the fluent tongue but it's going really well.

"Especially Marika, he's picking up the game, more and more things every week and evolving,"

"It's really exciting playing with those two."

Despite failing to record a win through four matches in 2017, Debreczeni said team morale remained high ahead of a daunting clash with the Highlanders on Friday night.

"One thing with this group is that the boys are quite tight," he said.

"A lot of us aren't from Melbourne originally so we have had to grow as a family together.

"As a team the morale is quite high and we have moved onto this week, we took last week's loss on the chin and the boys are excited to go for Friday."