Refreshed Edmed's quest to secure Waratahs flyhalf spot after Donaldson exit

Thu, Nov 23, 2023, 11:37 PM
Nathan Williamson
by Nathan Williamson
NSW Waratahs playmaker Tane Edmed is looking to make the flyhalf position his own as he reflects on a frustrating 2022. Photo: Getty Images
NSW Waratahs playmaker Tane Edmed is looking to make the flyhalf position his own as he reflects on a frustrating 2022. Photo: Getty Images

NSW Waratahs playmaker Tane Edmed is looking to make the flyhalf position his own as he reflects on a frustrating 2022.

Edmed ended the season starting in the quarter-final defeat to the Chiefs, although it was a far from ideal year for the 23-year-old and the Waratahs.

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Coming off a breakout year, the Eastwood product started the first three games before his relegation to the bench, only to suffer a stress fracture of his L5 vertebrae.

He returned at the end of the season although could do little to help the Waratahs as they under-performed to their lofty standards.

“It was pretty difficult,” Edmed admits to Rugby.com.au

“We had high expectations for ourselves, more so than everyone else and to not play the footy we were hoping to play all through the season, not just the quarter-final, was really disappointing.

“The biggest message we got out of it was consistency. We’re a really talented group, we just didn’t play the footy we wanted to (in) back-to-back games or sets. We just didn’t get that momentum.

“We’ve learnt a lot from it which is really positive and hoping to make some big improvements…we’re geared nicely for a big 2024.”

Edmed took his first major injury as a professional to reflect on his processes, conceding his 'intense' training approach was doing more harm than good.

“I’ve learned a lot about how I go about things with training loads and I probably didn’t go about it the right, probably overtrained if anything. I’m now just being a bit smarter about it," he said.

“…I probably didn’t go about my off-field game the way I would’ve liked, I probably was a bit too intense, to be honest and had a lot of focus on footy and maybe went too far that way. “From a team perspective, we’ve made a few minor changes that can bring out halves into the game so I think we can reap some good rewards from a few minor tweaks.”

With a fresh approach, Edmed will get the chance to solidify his hold over the ten jersey in Friday's opening trial against NSW Pacifica.

The Waratahs spent the majority of 2023 trying to find the right balance with their playmakers as Edmed battled Wallaby Ben Donaldson for minutes.

The pair have been battling each other for the past 18 months, with Donaldson's Australia A form in 2022 eventually leading to his Wallabies debut and subsequent Rugby World Cup call-up.

However, Donaldson's move to the Western Force allows both players the necessary opportunities to grow their game and get valuable starting minutes.

Edmed won't have it easy though, with the returning Will Harrison and Junior Wallabies star Jack Bowen applying plenty of pressure.

“I think it’s been good for the both of us to get away from each other,” Edmed believes on Donaldson's move.

“We have that opportunity to play a little bit more footy but at the same time, ‘Harro’ (Will Harrison) and ‘Bowy’ (Jack Bowen) are great players as well so the competition is really strong there.

“Pinning down that ten jersey is the main goal but it will be tough with those guys coming through.”

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