Newest Wallaby, rising star, extend contracts with Reds

Super Rugby
by Emma Greenwood

Liam Wright has capped an outstanding week by following his Wallabies debut with a two-year contract extension with the Reds.

Wright and fellow back-rower Angus Scott-Young have both pledged their allegiance to Queensland until the end of the 2021 season.

Their signings further enhance a Reds pack already bolstered by the re-signing of Wallabies prop Taniela Tupou (until 2023) and Junior Wallabies captain Fraser McReight (2023), while the franchise also announced last week exciting halfback Tate McDermott had also agreed to terms until after the next World Cup.

Liam Wright (right) ready to make a tackle on New Zealand's Jordie Barrett in his Test debut at Eden Park on Saturday. Phot: AFPWright, 21, who became Wallaby no.928 when he played 20 minutes off the bench in Australia's 36-0 loss at Eden Park, said he was excited to extend his tenure with Queensland.

“I can’t wait to continue growing and developing alongside a great group of people, players and good mates as we work towards our goal of a Super Rugby championship for Queensland,” he said.

Wright started in every game of the Reds' Super Rugby campaign in 2019, playing all but 12 minutes of the season in an effort that left him runner-up for the prestigious Pilecki Medal and helped bolster his cause with the Wallabies.

"Despite the result, I was still incredibly proud to put on this jersey and run out there with the boys, it was one of the best 20 minutes' of my life," Wright said after making his Wallabies debut on Saturday night.

Angus Scott Young (left) and Liam Wright team up to make a tackle in the Reds' Super Rugby clash against the Sharks in Durban. Photo: Getty Images

"I just tried to rip in and had a ball out there despite us not getting the result."

Scott-Young had celebrations of his own over the weekend after helping the University of Queensland to a Queensland Premier Rugby title in their Hospital Cup grand final win over Brothers.

The 22-year-old earnt praise from Wallabies coach Michael Cheika early in the Super Rugby season and was invited into preliminary Wallabies camps in a sign of his enormous potential.

He was also named the Reds' defensive player of the year by no-nonsense coach Peter Ryan for his work ethic and toughness.

Angus Scott-Young tackles the Blues' Taniela Tele'a in the Reds' win at Suncorp Stadium. Photo: Getty Images

The son of Wallabies forward Sam Scott-Young, Angus said he was honoured to continue his development with the Reds.

“I grew up hearing stories of how Queensland was one of the most successful rugby provinces in the world during the 90s," Scott-Young said.

"It’s always been a goal of mine to restore the Reds to this former glory.”

The duo's re-signing continues a rugby partnership that started at high school, where both were members of the legendary 2014 Churchie said that has produced players such as Kalyn Ponga, Brodie Croft, Izzy Perese and Mack Mason.

Liam Wright shows off his Wallaby cap alongside Reds teammate Izack Rodda after making his debut at Eden Park. Photo: RUGBY.com.au/Stuart Walmsley

Reds coach Brad Thorn said it was good to see the pair remain in Queensland.

“They’re good mates and well respected within our group," Thorn said.

"They’ve known each other since school. They’ve played U20s together for Queensland and Australia, plus with Queensland Country in the NRC. It’s important we continue to develop their rugby futures here in Queensland."

The extensions of Wright and Scott-Young gives the Reds one of the most exciting back rows in Australia, with the pair set to go to battle with Lukhan Salakaia-Loto and Junior Wallabies McReight and Harry Wilson for three starting spots.