Beale happy to play roving assassin

Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

Kurtley Beale is content to continue roaming the field for the Wallabies, in a fluid backline setup, with England keeping one eye on the in-form back.

Beale has played fullback the past two Tests but often comes up to attack at 12 and it’s a setup he’s happy to continue with.

“It's a bit of a roving role and I'll play wherever the coaches see fit and think I play my best rugby, whatever's the best for the team,” he said.

“As a back line we all have a good understanding of what is required in certain positions.

“Sometimes out in the field you might have to fill in for someone else and it's great we have that understanding of each other.

“Whatever makes the team do well I'm happy to do it.”

Karmichael Hunt came off the bench to replace starting inside centre Samu Kerevi in the 52nd minute against Wales, and would appear a chance to fill that role against England.

That was the first time Beale and Hunt had played together, with the latter injured during the Rugby Championship and Beale missing June.

Beale said the Reds fullback was a valuable addition to the team, with his composure under pressure.

“With K (Hunt) he brings a lot of class and lot of energy and a lot of calmness,” Beale said.

“He is a great player with a lot of experience in different codes and he certainly has got a good head on his shoulders.

“He has added a lot to us for sure.

Karmichael Hunt came on for Samu Kerevi in the second half in Cardiff. Photo: Getty ImagesBeale’s own return to the team has been invaluable, with a spectacular steal, leading to a 65-metre try against Wales, another reminder of his skill.

The 28-year-old missed all four of the Australia-England matches last year, with injury, but he’ll be one of the most dangerous for the Wallabies this weekend, something of which England coach Eddie Jones is all too aware.

“He’s the most wonderfully gifted player,” he said.

“He does things other players don’t even dream of.

“He’s got that ability to make that big play.”

Jones said Beale had clearly grown from his season in the Premiership as well.

“His stint at Wasps has aided him, he’s become a lot more professional, a lot more consistent,” he said.

“He just adds that extra dimension that you don’t know where he’s going to turn up in attack, you don’t know what he’s going to do and he does it with skill, he does it with pace and he does it with precision and a smile on his face.

“He’s an outstanding player so we’re going to have to watch him carefully.”

The Wallabies take on England on Saturday November 18, kicking off at 3pm local, Sunday 2am AEDT, LIVE on beIN Sports and SBS.