ANOTHER successful New England Mutual National Rugby Camp wrapped up in Armidale yesterday with the help of two of NSW rugby’s young stars.
Waratahs Pat McCutcheon, who helped launch the annual camp last year, and Sam Lane dropped in to have a run with participants.
Lane is one of the new faces at the Waratahs after being signed as part of the Extended Playing Squad and moving down from Queensland.
The 22-year old has been around rugby most of his life and has a strong rugby pedigree.
His father Tim is a former Wallabies centre and was assistant coach of the 1999 World Cup winning side.
The apple hasn’t fallen far from the tree as the say with Sam an inside centre or five-eighth.
“I played a fair bit of inside centre when I was living in South Africa,” he said.
Five-eighth though is where he’s likely to figure for the Waratahs.
“That’s where I’m hoping to get a go,” he said.
“Obviously there’s a few guys ahead of me.”
Namely Berrick Barnes and Bernard Foley.
Lane too is on the comeback trail.
“I’m just recovering from an ACL injury,” he said.
“I joined full training four weeks ago. It’s been good to get the ball back in my hands after not touching it for a year or so.”
He hasn’t had a great run with injuries the past couple of years.
After recovering from an ACL injury and being signed on a short-term contract by the Reds last year to cover for their backline injury crisis, Lane joined those on the sidelines.
“I played two games. I got injured in the second one in the third minute,” he said.
“It was pretty disappointing but I’ve pushed past it.”
Now he’s just looking forward to “playing a bit of footy”, and hoping to show what he can do.
“I just want to get back to playing footy and enjoying it.
“I’ve played about six games in two years,” he said.
Hopefully he’d be able to add to that tally significantly this year.
The Waratahs open their Super Rugby campaign against the Reds in Brisbane on February 23.