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Thread: McCalman to be put to the test

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    McCalman to be put to the test

    Justin Chadwick 19:22 AEST Thu Jan 27 2011

    Force flanker Ben McCalman (pic) may be forced to fill in at lock to replace injured Nathan Sharpe.



    The versatility of Ben McCalman is set to get an early test, with the Wallabies flanker in line to play at lock during the Western Force's upcoming trial games.

    With Force skipper Nathan Sharpe ruled out for the next few weeks after undergoing surgery to fix a hernia, McCalman is in line to replace him at lock for trial games against an Australian Barbarians side on February 5 and the NSW Waratahs on February 10.

    McCalman, whose standout season for the Force last year earned him a dream Wallabies call-up, has filled in at lock before, although his preference is for a spot in the backrow.

    But with Sharpe battling a race against time to be fit for the season opener against Queensland on February 20, McCalman may need some practise at lock in case he's needed there against the Reds.

    "While you don't want to be losing out on a Nathan Sharpe, I think if there's going to be a (good) time where he's out it's now," forwards coach Nick Stiles said on Thursday.

    "He's getting pretty old so it gives him a chance to freshen up but it also puts pressure on the young guys to step up in terms of line-out calling roles that they may not have done in the past.

    "To have the depth that we have through the backrow and having someone like Ben being able to play second row and back row, it puts us in good stead."

    Flanker Matt Hodgson has embraced the team's overflowing talent in the backrow, even if it means he could be relegated to the bench during the Super rugby season.

    Although David Pocock is a shoo-in at flanker, Hodgson will have to battle it out with fellow Wallabies Richard Brown and McCalman for the remaining two spots in the back row.

    "It's going to be good," Hodgson said.

    "It's such a long season this year and then you've also got Ben McCalman that can play lock, especially now that Sharpey will be out of those trials.

    "And then also all four of us can rotate through those positions. It's going to be an added bonus for theForce this season."

    http://wwos.ninemsn.com.au/article.aspx?id=8202793

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    I wonder why they waited this long to opt for surgery on Sharpie?

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    (formerly known as Coach) Your Humble Servant Darren's Avatar
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    So he could make it to the TWF awards night

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    can hernia's get worse?
    or go un-noticed?

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    "He's getting pretty old so it gives him a chance to freshen up"

    Ow!!!
    Sounds like Sharpie getting some of his own interview medicine served back to him haha!

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    Why's he paying out on sharpie when he should be hammering Tommy and Sam!

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    C'mon the

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    from what i heard it was a recent injury?

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    Quote Originally Posted by GIGS20 View Post
    Why's he paying out on sharpie when he should be hammering Tommy and Sam!
    I agree! Big Sam and Tommy gun have a real chance to lift to the next level while Sharpie is convalescing.

    Maybe he is firing them up by not mentioning them at all...

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