Wallabies can lift the nation in June: Kerevi

by Sam Phillips

Given the lowly state of the Australian Conference, Samu Kerevi hopes the Wallabies will be able to "lift the nation" come June.

With all the doom and gloom surrounding the Super Rugby saga, a Wallabies clean sweep of Italy, Fiji and Scotland would do wonders for public morale.

The star centre knows that and said the squad will relish the challenge.

"Obviously we can't take any team lightly coming into this June series, leading into the Rugby Championship," he said.

"I think we need to play some consistent footy for the Wallabies and the way the Australian Conference is going in Super Rugby, we can lift the nation with the Wallabies games in June."Samu Kerevi can't wait for the June Tests. Photo: Getty ImagesKerevi is a very proud Fijian and admits facing his country of birth will be an emotional hurdle he will have to come to terms with on June 10.

"Playing Fiji in Melbourne will obviously be massive for myself," Kerevi said.

"I haven't played them and there are going to be a lot of familiar faces out there.

"I've still got both passports - I've still got my Fijian passport - so it will be an emotional rollercoaster but I'm really keen and excited for the challenge."

When it comes to his own game, Kerevi has spoken in depth about the need to improve his work on the defensive side of the ball.

That's the part of the game where Tevita Kuridrani has an edge on him, in the race for the starting outside centre job.Tevita Kuridrani and Kerevi offer unique skill sets at outside centre. Photo: Getty ImagesKerevi is as close to a complete package in attack as any player in the country but in the past, has struggled to read the play in defence, often leaving him clutching at air.

He has improved in that space for Queensland this year and is often seen working hard on his defence after training with Reds defence coach Jason Gilmore.

"I feel like over the last couple of weeks I have been getting really comfortable, defensively," Kerevi said.

"For me, it's more about creating good habits.

"I've had bad habits back in the day where I have been planning too much or trying to launch from a distance.

"Now I'm getting closer and taking my time with the tackle and not worrying about it too much when I'm in that space."