HE rates playing for Country against the British and Irish Lions as one of his career highlights but Angus Roberts will be plotting against them tomorrow.
The former Gunnedah junior will line up for the Sydney Stars when they tackle the NSW Country Eagles at Ken Chillingworth Oval.
After an injury-disrupted 2014, the 24-year-old is relishing the opportunity to play in the National Rugby Championship, and looking forward to getting back to his Country roots.
“It’s always good to be back. It should be a pretty good game,” Roberts said.
He hasn’t had the chance to play a lot out in the bush since those junior days with the Red Devils but should have a fair support crew there.
“I’ve still got friends based out there and my mum’s based in Tamworth,” he said.
He’s also got a few family members coming over.
The last few years have been a bit of a rollercoaster for Roberts.
After a breakout 2012 which saw him plucked out of the Sydney club ranks and playing for the Melbourne Rebels the next year, he was in and out of the side last year and then battled with injury for the latter part of the season.
“It’s frustrating when you know you’re coming to the end of a contract and you have a few untimely injuries,” Roberts said.
This season he missed the first five or six weeks of the Shute Shield after picking up a hamstring injury.
He spent the first little while when he returned shuffling around positions – filling in the gaps when other guys were injured – before cementing a spot at five-eighth.
Not that he minds where he plays, he’s just happy to be putting some games together, but that is probably where he knows best.
He has also assumed the kicking responsibilities, something he hasn’t been able to do a lot of in recent years with the injuries.
“It’s such an important thing in this competition, with conversions worth three points,” he said.
“I’m not hitting them too bad at the moment,” he said.
He also found himself the elder statesman of what is a young and talented backline.
Tom Kingston has been a revelation at fullback while outside centre Jim Stewart has been picked up by the Waratahs.
Throw in the likes of Waratahs skipper Dave Dennis and a sprinkling of other Super Rugby players and you have the makings of a very good side.
It has been a promising start with the Stars winning their first three games.
“We’ve got a pretty good mix of boys – a good mix of youth and experience,” Roberts said.
“And there’s a really good attitude and vibe. That belief is also there.”