Wallabies and Waratahs fly-half Bernard Foley has said that he wants to have a ‘Tom Brady effect’ on his Waratahs teammates this season as he prepares to step into more of a leadership role under Daryl Gibson.
The Waratahs have a number of debutantes in their backline this season with halfback Jake Gordon, inside centre Irae Simone and winger Harry Jones all set for their first senior starts in the Waratahs final pre-season trial against the Highlanders on Thursday.
With three debutantes in the Waratahs starting side, Foley emphasised the importance of having a calming effect on his teammates similar to the rapport that New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady has with his Super Bowl-winning teammates.
“Just ease those guys into the game, a bit like the Tom Brady effect, just allow them to do their job,” Foley is quoted as saying on The Roar.
“In the past couple of years I’ve looked around and you had the likes of Adam Ashley-Cooper and Kurtley Beale, guys who have been stalwarts in Super Rugby.
“Now looking around in that backline there is a bit of a void, but it’s a challenge I have to take up along with Israel.
“He (Folau) has been in the game now for a number of years and we’ve been given a bit more ownership or a bit more accountability in making sure this backline lives up to it’s full potential because there is a lot of good talented guys there.”
The Waratahs won their first game of the pre-season with a convincing 53-7 win over the Brumbies in Mudgee, New South Wales, earlier this month.
The Tahs finished in sixth place in the Australasian Group last season with eight wins from 15 games. They will kick off their 2017 season next weekend when they welcome the Western Force to Allianz Stadium.
Jack O’Toole, Pundit Arena