Tuqiri taken to task on sprinting

Lote Tuqiri, under-fire for a prank on team-mate Peter Hewat which backfired last weekend, has been taking further flak in the Wallabies’ training camp after he was given an individual sprint session on Tuesday.

Tuqiri was given the drills away from the rest of his squad-mates on the first day of the three-day camp in a bid to sharpen him up for the two-Test series against Wales.

Australia coach John Connolly would not say whether Tuqiri would play in the first Test or not.

“We just thought that while Lote had great involvements this year, more than any other winger, that we could make grounds on the speed side of his fitness,” Connolly told reporters.

“I won’t speculate if he plays the tests or not. But, at the moment, we’ve pulled him out of this to concentrate on his speed.”

Tuqiri has been suffering a scoring drought, with only one try in his past 21 competitive matches, and his outspoken nature and occasionally ill-judged actions have been widely criticised in the press.

Full-back Cameron Shepherd, prop Rodney Blake and lock Hugh McMeniman will not be available for the first test due to injury.


365 Digital

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