Tahu says he is over League

Waratahs back liner Timana Tahu has revealed that he wanted to play rugby union four years ago and says that he has no regrets about swapping codes from league to Union.


“I’m over rugby league,” Tahu told AAP as he prepared for Australia A’s clash with Fiji on Sunday at Ballymore.


Tahu once labeled rugby union as “boring” in deliberate attempt to play down his controversial code switch. Tahu, an ex-Newcastle and Parramatta back however revealed that rugby union was at the forefront of his thoughts as far back as 2004 when he was a regular member of Australia and New South Wales league teams.


The revelation comes as State of Origin fever grips NSW and Queensland and Tahu denies that he felt any pangs of doubt about his conversion.


“As soon as I got the chance to talk to Ewen (McKenzie) and the Waratahs, the first thing on my mind was to get out of rugby league,” Tahu said.


“I achieved a lot of things in rugby league, which I was grateful for doing, but for the last three years, four years it was rugby union and I wanted to come over and there were no regrets.”


The 27-year-old added that he was keen to follow the lead of dual internationals Lote Tuqiri, Wendell Sailor and Mat Rogers and challenge himself in the 15-man code.


Those league converts all made their Wallabies debuts in their first season in Union and Tahu is still on track to do the same.


“It’s not a league v union thing,” he said, admitting watching Origin still gave him chills.


“I was achieving what I wanted to achieve in rugby league and I was looking for greater challenges and I saw other opportunities in rugby union.”


Tahu’s first season in rugby union has been hampered by a hamstring injury with the Waratahs but he is making up for lost time playing inside centre for Australia A in the Pacific Nations Cup.


He excelled in last Sunday’s 90-7 rout of Tonga at North Sydney Oval but he is expecting a much tougher test over the next nine days against Fiji and NZ Maori.


“For the first 20 minutes against Tonga, it was a little bit tough but they just dropped off and they played terrible,” he said.


“If you play good against a side that you flog about 90-nil, it doesn’t really mean much.


“This will be the test for me – Fiji and the Maori game – to see how I’m going. This Sunday will be a lot tougher and the scores will be a lot closer.”


Wallaby coach Robbie Deans sees Tahu as a potential Test No.12 so he is setting his sights on the position and feels that his game is becoming more instinctive after three A matches.


“The things I was doing were more structured, now I just go out and play football,” he said.


“I feel better at 12. I’m not a bloke who can finish tries like I used to when I was younger.


“I think it’s more trying to create holes for the fast wingers and them finishing it off.”


An Australian A victory over third-placed Fiji at Ballymore would set up a virtual final in the last-round Pacific Nations Cup clash with the Maori in Sydney on Sunday week.

 

Rugbyweek.com

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