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'I wasn’t up to standard': Motivated Bell eager to stake claim as world's best on Waratahs return

Fri, 28/01/2022, 4:07 am
Nathan Williamson
by Nathan Williamson
Super Rugby Pacific will be full of action, featuring the best of the Southern Hemisphere

One thing motivates Angus Bell as he looks to take the next step: Becoming the best loosehead in Australia and the World.

The 21-year-old has stepped up as a regular for the Waratahs and Wallabies, looming as a key piece of Dave Rennie's plans for the future.

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However, not even a breakthrough International start could please Bell in what he called a 'below standard season' such are the expectations he sets on himself.

“I feel like I’m up to a better standard physically than I was last year…personally I wasn’t happy with how I was playing this year in Test matches and I have a lot more to give. I wasn’t up to the standard I wanted to be it,” he told reporters.

“I want to be the best loose-head in Australia. I want to start for my country.

"Last year, I felt like I achieved that in spots and started a couple of times but when I got those opportunities, I wasn’t quite accurate enough in some areas and Dave (Rennie) let me know about it and then put me back on the bench.

“Personally, I know what I can do on the field and still want to keep pushing myself to have a greater impact and a better loosehead at the international level.

“I learnt a lot from (James Slipper) last year but my goals are not to sit behind someone, I want to be the number one loosehead in Australia and the world so I’ll keep pushing myself physically, mentally in the pre-season and try and make myself better.”

Bell was straight into training after the Spring Tour and a cancelled Barbarians stint, instantly impressed by the standards set by new coach Darren Coleman.

“I just trained through (the pre-season) to get better physically and technically. I didn’t really have a break this year, I came into the squad open-eyed and DC’s (Darren Coleman) been running an awesome ship.

“It was pretty refreshing and eye-opening, it was an awesome experience to join the squad under a fresh coach who pushes the standards.

“…I came in early to get a head start on my fitness but DC’s come with a harder approach and is really pushing standards and working hard for each other which is a great value for a team to have.”


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The 22-year-old will get a chance to impress in Saturday's opening trial of 2022 as they take on the Brumbies in Bowral.

It pits Bell against two of his biggest mentors within the current Wallabies: legendary loosehead James Slipper and forwards coach Dan McKellar.

“Watching and learning off Slips, he’s a man of not many words and when it comes to go-time, he’s one of the best," he added. "You can ask anyone in Australia and they’ll have the same opinion about what he does and what he brings to a team and training physically."

“Dan’s big on action. He’s big on working hard and that’s where the respect is gained and inspires a team to do better

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