'Mack was certainly made an offer to stay': Brumbies proud of Hansen after Irish debut

Mon, Feb 7, 2022, 9:03 PM
Nathan Williamson
by Nathan Williamson
Less than two weeks out from the start of the inaugural season, the virtual launch will bring together the captains and coaches of all Australian-based teams as we preview this exciting new era.

Brumbies coach Dan McKellar has expressed his pride in Mack Hansen after his Ireland debut, rejecting claims he was not offered a deal.

Hansen has been a sensation since leaving the club, earning an Irish call-up after starring for Connacht in the United Rugby Championship.

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The 23-year-old's Man of the Match performance against Wales had many talking about how the outside back was lost to Australian Rugby, with reports suggesting he had not been offered a deal by a club.

However, McKellar sought to clarify the Brumbies' stance whilst expressing his pride at his development.

“We’re really pleased. He’s an incredibly popular member of the group and a great character…I just want to put it out there that Mack was certainly made an offer to stay in Australia and he wanted a life experience, a different change,” he told reporters.

"He's a Canberra boy, he's grown up in Canberra, born and bred and wanted to experience something different and that's the beauty of rugby union, isn't it, you can go around the world and enjoy and experience that.

"It certainly wasn't that he wasn't wanted, we did all we could to try and keep him. He wanted a change and we respected that, hoping we might be able to get him back in a year or two but that's probably looking unlikely now."

McKellar enters his final year in charge at the Brumbies with a different perspective and a greater knowledge of their competition, having spent the second half of 2021 on secondment with the Wallabies.


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The forwards coach admits it's going to be a unique experience going up against guys who he will coach on a permanent basis as forwards coach come July.

"It's a little bit different, isn't it? Even last week up in Bowral I probably wouldn't have said hello to Lachie Swinton but went over and had a chat. They're good Rugby men and you look at anyone's career across Rugby and there aren't many pork chops there, they're all good blokes and want to rip in and the Wallabies boys aren't different," McKellar said.

"I really enjoyed working with different blokes from different franchises. They've (now) got a little idea of how I work and operate so I've got to be smart with how I go about my coaching with the Brumbies and my approach.

"They're going to want to rip in for their franchises and I'm exactly the same for the Brumbies. Once the game is done, the respect for one another is there."

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