Tuttle, Perese performances not up to scratch: Stiles

Super Rugby
by Sam Phillips

In the age of 'managing' rosters, Nick Stiles highlighted performance as the key factor in the omissions of James Tuttle and Izaia Perese for the Reds' clash with the Rebels.

While the pair have both looked to be dependable future stars in their starts this year, Tuttle's name being left out of the 23 altogether was more surprising than Perese's relegation to the bench.

He has started Queensland's last six matches and the foundations of a solid combination with Quade Cooper are there.

But Stiles feels the rigours of acclimatising to consistent minutes at Super Rugby level has caught up with the young halfback.

"First and foremost it's about their performance - that's the most important thing," Stiles said.

"There is definitely an element around their workloads but the first thing was their performance.

"Bobby Tuttle - he challenged Nick Frisby from the get-go and earned that spot.

"Over the last week or two with that big workload, we just felt his performances dropped off a little bit and the effort probably wasn't there last week as we would expect.

"So he misses out on the 23 altogether."

Tuttle's omission presents a golden opportunity for Frisby, who had a poor opening month before some off field issues crept into his preparation.Nick Frisby is back in Queensland's starting XV. Photo: RUGBY.com.au/Stuart WalmsleyHe was even omitted from the 23 and sent back to club land before their clash with the Brumbies and Stiles has been loud and clear as to what the four-cap Wallaby needed to work on.

"Nick has had an up and down season to be honest," Stiles said today.

"But we really feel that he's worked hard on his game and deserves another chance to start this season.

"If you want to produce your best football you've got to work hard on the field and I reckon his focus and his intent on the field has been much better.

"You've got to also work extremely hard away from Ballymore.

"The reality is, you spend more time away from Ballymore than you do (here) so the decisions you make in life around preparation, studying, knowledge, all that sort of stuff is crucial to success.Izaia Perese has been dropped. Photo: RUGBY.com.au/Stuart Walmsley"And I feel he has been a lot better in those areas over the last six weeks."

Perese's work in attack has been explosive but his defensive work is far less impressive.

A stupid yellow card triggered the Reds' downfall against the Waratahs, he misses far too many tackles and is yet to manoeuvre overlap situations in which he needs to jam in to cut attacks at the source.

"Izzy I reckon is a very exciting footballer but he is still young and I think as a young footballer you need to learn lessons," Stiles said.

"If you're not playing well enough and not doing everything right on the field there is consequences and unfortunately for him I felt his defensive efforts have been pretty poor."

Stiles hopes the return of Karmichael Hunt, along with Frisby, will help the Reds flourish.

"We've got five games left, we want to win as many of those as possible and three of those are against Australian teams - the carrot is there," he said.

"With all the doom and gloom in Australian rugby, for us, the Queensland Reds, we can focus on what we can control - we can control a good performance this weekend."

The Reds and the Rebels clash at AAMI Park on Saturday night, kicking off at 7:45pm AEST, broadcast LIVE on FOX SPORTS and via radio at RUGBY.com.au. For tickets, head to melbournerebels.com.au.