Brumbies welcome Lolesio back as they reap benefits of pre-season tweak

Tue, 07/12/2021, 10:25 pm
Nathan Williamson
by Nathan Williamson
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The Brumbies have welcomed back Wallabies flyhalf Noah Lolesio to training as they look to implement a fresh approach to pre-season.

Lolesio resumed training on Monday, having been called onto the Spring Tour as a late replacement following injuries to Quade Cooper and Reece Hodge.

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The 21-year-old's approach to training has been welcomed by the Brumbies coaching staff as they look to formalise their gameplan ahead of the Christmas break.

“He’s a really good learner Noah, he always has that thirst for knowledge,” assistant coach Rob Seib told media on Tuesday.

“Even since he’s come back into the doors, he’s been wanting to find out what our changes are, what the tweaks are, how we can evolve our game.

“He’s one of those blokes that are itching to get better so him in this environment always adds another level.

“We’re really relishing the fact he’s back for a couple of weeks before we go away for the Christmas break so he can get up to speed so when we start again after the break, he’s ready to go understanding what we have been doing and where we’re at.”

Lolesio's presence is a welcome one for a Brumbies side taking a slightly different approach to pre-season.

There's been a genuine focus on upskilling players across the squad and Seib and the rest of the coaches are already seeing the benefits of the more skill-focused program as they search for greater consistency against New Zealand teams.

“For players like Noah, they have a high degree of skill level so they're fine. It’s about creating that skill level in the depth across the squad,” he believes.

“It’s all well and good to have a ten who can kick, run and pass but when you blokes around him who struggle to do any of the three, it can limit your gameplan.

“We’re at the stage where we’re trying to expand our game so regardless of what the opposition throws at us, we can manipulate or change our tactics and not be afraid that we don’t have the players with the skillset to execute.

“I’ve been really impressed with a bloke like Caderyn Neville who hasn’t been expected to execute a lot of skill in the past. The skill level that’s been achieved over the past couple of weeks has been fantastic. When we get into drills and training where he’s put under stress, he’s a great example of someone who is showing he has really developed and is keen to get better.”

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This comes with players knowing a potential International opportunity could be on the horizon, witnessing the first-hand rise of Len Ikitau in 2021 to one of the premier outside centres in the world.

Along with this, Academy players such as Corey Toole have excelled on the Sevens circuit, finishing top of the try-scorers list at the previous event in Dubai.

“The message to the players has been the opportunity can come at any time. You can think you are a long way off but then get that tap on the door," Seib added.  

“A good example of that is a guy whose been at the Brumbies and the academy program in Corey Toole going on to represent Australia in the Sevens in Dubai. He’s the leading try-scorer there so it goes to show any time you can get that tap on the shoulder and off you go

“If you are ready to take that opportunity, you can then make the most of it.” 

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