Genia in the dark about 2018 destination

Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

Wallabies halfback Will Genia says he’s in the dark as to which Super Rugby club he’ll play for in 2018, though an announcement looms.

While Queensland is Genia’s first-choice, the Reds have a full complement of halfbacks on their books, making it difficult to maneouvre the 29-year-old’s return.

The Melbourne Rebels are the other likely option and could be edging ahead of Ballymore.

Genia said his deal would become public ‘soon’ but curiously said he wasn’t sure where exactly it would be.

“It's pretty much finalised, I've just got to wait and add the last little bits of the detail and should be announced soon,” he said.

“I don't know where it is.

“I'm here just concentrating on camp, my manager's taking care of that so I'll just wait and see where I'm going to play."

Genia has long had an agreement with Australian rugby for 2018 and beyond, before being released by French club, Stade Francais.

“I signed a contract with Australian rugby in November last year so that was always going to happen and my release was done a month before the June Tests,” he said.

“It's more just been a case of trying to nut out the details with the Super Rugby club and now it's pretty much done.”

The halfback said he’d never discussed the prospect of a paycut within the discussions, though there has been reports that the national body had to reduce his payments, which a club is required to match to a certain point.

“I'd signed a contract that was agreed and within that agreement it just said that I had to choose a club by the 31st of December and it wasn't ever a discussion that you'd have to take a pay cut to go to a club or anything like that,” he said.

“I can't really answer that because that wasn't ever something that was spoken about.”

Queensland is clearly his number one choice, and Genia said the thought of linking up with long-time halves partner Quade Cooper was part of that.

“I'd love to play with Quade, he's one of my really good mates and played pretty much my whole professional footy career with Quadey so if that opportunity comes up, it's something I'm really looking forward to,” he said.

The vice-captain said the uncertainty wasn’t worrying him.

“At the end of the day, I understand particularly with Queensland, coming back at this point in time with their squad being full it's going to be quite tough,” he said.

“So I'll just have to wait and I've been allowed to concentrate on other things, like playing in June and having a break after that.

“I'm not too fussed, I haven't been too bothered by it at all.”

Will Genia was influential in Brisbane. Photo: ARU Media/Stu WalmsleyGenia will be back in full training this week after illness curtailed his involvement in the Wallabies’ Newcastle camp a fortnight ago, and he’s confident his fitness will be up to scratch.

“(I had) gastro and a bit of a virus,” he said.

“Two days of being run down and then I just decided to rest to be good to go for this game.

“I find it hard to stop training so I was training even when I had a break so I'm pretty sweet coming back into camp.

“My conditioning, I'm happy with it and obviously you never want to be too happy and not work hard but I'm in good shape.”

The Wallabies 34-man Bledisloe Cup squad is in camp in Cessnock this week, before heading to Penrith for the Bledisloe lead-up.

Australia takes on New Zealand on August 19 in Sydney, kicking off at 8pm AEST, LIVE on FOX SPORTS, Network Ten and via RADIO. Buy tickets here.