Next LIVE rugby on TV
to be announced
Wed, 31 Jul 2013 14:30:05 +0000
  • Switch Edition
ESPN SCRUM / Australia / News
Liam Gill best 'on-ball openside' in Australia
January 29, 2014
The Reds' Liam Gill carries the ball against the Hurricanes, Queensland reds v Hurricanes, Super Rugby, Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane, March 1, 2013
Liam Gill is as good as Michael Hooper, Richard Graham says © Getty Images

Liam Gill is the best on-ball openside flanker in Australia and he could have matched Michael Hooper's meteoric rise to the 2013 John Eales Medal had he been given the opportunity when David Pocock's serious knee injury last year opened the door, Richard Graham says.

"I have no doubt," Graham said.

"Over the ball, he is the best in Australia - better than Pocock. His lineout ability is a real strength. And some of the things that you saw in his skill set last year left people astounded."

Pocock returns to action in the Brumbies' first pre-season trial against the Highlanders in Queenstown on Friday, having missed almost the entire 2013 Super Rugby season after tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in March.

"It's the exact same scenario as it was 12 months ago," Gill said of the battle for the Wallabies' No.7 jumper.

"Everyone was fit and healthy and then George Smith came in. There's always tough competition for a No.7 jersey. We started in the same manner last year so, hopefully, I will go head-to-head with both David and Michael first up."

Gill won't have to wait long to test his skills as the Reds play Pocock's Brumbies on February 22 and Hooper's New South Waratahs on March 1 in their opening two Super Rugby fixtures.

Hooper played all but one of the Wallabies' 15 Tests last year, while Gill made seven appearances off the bench, filling all back-row positions. Gill has played blindside flanker as a replacement during his 15-Test career, but he is clear that he wants to go head-to-head with Pocock and Hooper for the Wallabies' No.7 spot.

"If my game suits six, I will play six, but I think I am an out and out seven," Gill said. "I am confident of my ability and the way I can develop and keep getting better."


Live Sports

Communication error please reload the page.

  • Football

    Baines: Everton more positive under Martinez

    Leighton Baines has admitted Roberto Martinez allows Everton to play with more freedom than under his predecessor David Moyes

  • UFC

    Werdum not daunted by challenge of Browne

    What can Travis Browne do for himself? For starters, he can move a step closer to a title shot by defeating Fabricio Werdum on Saturday

  • Football

    Moyes eyes signings before World Cup

    David Moyes has confirmed his summer transfer plans are well underway and revealed he is hoping to make additions to his Manchester United squad before the start of the World Cup on June 12

  • Football

    Chelsea sweating on Hazard for Atletico

    Eden Hazard is still a doubt for Chelsea's Champions League semi-final first leg against Atletico Madrid and will definitely miss Saturday's home match against Sunderland

  • Golf

    Larrazabal dives into water to shake off hornets

    Lee Westwood jumped out to a four-shot lead, but it was Pablo Larrazabal's leap into a water hazard to escape hornets that had everybody buzzing during the Malaysian Open second round on Friday

Sponsored Links
Trade on Demo account $100,000! Get a FREE Pack
12 videos + 5 ebooks + $100000 demo + $2500 bonus!
Google Vs Facebook, 60 sec. knock out!
Make $170 in 60 seconds! Choose a champion, Become a Winner!
Make Huge Income from your Home 
Make real Profits - Sign in for a full training program for free