Meakes inching towards call on future

Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

Wallabies squad centre Billy Meakes says he’s close to making a call on his next career move, as he looks to make a mark against the Barbarians this weekend.

The Rebels are expected to be high on the list, with more than 10 players potentially in the mix to switch from the Force to the Melbourne side.

The former Force back Meakes said his 2018 destination was close to being sorted.

“I've almost come to a decision,” he told

“I'm pretty sure I know where I want to go, we're just trying to figure out contractually all the last, finer details and hopefully we can get it all sorted in the next couple of days and get an announcement before the end of the week.

“There was a fair bit going on, it was a pretty lengthy process but I’m delighted I can try and move on eventually and get stuck into next year.”

Part of the attraction of Melbourne would be continuing to work under former Force coach Dave Wessels, who brought Meakes back to Australia.

“Dave's been amazing this year,” he said.

“I've really enjoyed working with him, I think he's a fantastic coach and for Melbourne, that's a huge win for them.

“If Melbourne's where I decide to go next year, it'd be awesome to continue that relationship with him and I'm sure there's a lot of boys that are thinking the same.”

The 26-year-old is hoping to start at 12 for the Wallabies against the Barbarians this weekend, keen to tally some game time after being on the squad’s fringes through The Rugby Championship.

“Cheik hasn't announced the team yet but I'm really hoping I'll get the nod at 12,” he said.

“I've sort of been split between playing outside backs and playing inside backs in the past and I think for the last couple of months, I've really honed in on playing 12 and being a ball player, as opposed just a straight up and down runner.

For he and others who have had little game time, Meakes said the Barbarians clash would be no joke.

“The coaches have been really clear that it's going to be built up as though a Test week would be, so all the preparation's the same and we're treating it just like a Test match.

“For players to be in the 12, and a part of that, it's really special and very exciting.”

Meakes will come up against a number of his Perth teammates on Saturday but said it hadn't crossed his mind.

“I haven't really thought about it too much but I've been talking to a few of the boys that are involved in the Baabaas and I suppose when you get to this level you're playing against your mates all the time, so it's something you get used to,” he said.

“We'll go pretty hard at each other in the game and then I'm sure we'll enjoy a beer after.”

The Wallabies take on the Barbarians on Saturday October 28, kicking off at 3pm AEDT at Allianz Stadium, LIVE on FOX SPORTS and Network Ten.