Western Force winger Alex Newsome enhanced his credentials when, in his Super Rugby run-on debut against the Crusaders in March, he latched on to wayward pass to race 60 metres to score under the posts.
The Glen Innes export signed with the Western Force in January after trialling with the club and quickly made an impact on the training paddock, enough to earn his first start.
“The team just got announced in the team meeting. We train in teams during the week but the team gets announced in the meeting. So that’s when I found out. So it was pretty cool to have everyone there,” he said.
“I was a pleasantly surprised. I thought I had been training hard and training well. But for the first time, you never quite think it is going to happen. But when I did get named, it was just one of those feelings where you go ‘It is actually happening’ So it was pretty cool.”
His runaway try against the Crusaders made fans stand up and take notice of a rugby star in the making.
Newsome built up a reputation as an intercept king while playing for the NSW Country Eagles in the National Rugby Championship. He said his first Super Rugby five-pointer was a memorable occasion.
“It was a pretty special moment,” he said. “I was just one of those things that happened. I was in the right place at the right time and off I went.”
Newsome has achieved a “lifelong dream” by playing Super Rugby, and the former Australian under 20 has adjusted to the step up.
He said while things are tougher at the higher level, he is thriving in the professional environment and hopes to make a long career out of it.
“A big learning curve is the professionalism of the whole environment, being new to it. But in terms of actual training, the everyday training, it is very intense and the games are very intense so you just have to adapt to that very quickly and just respond to that,” he said.
“Any aspiring rugby player aims to play for their country so that is a big one for me. But aside from that, it is just contributing to the Force as best I can and aspiring to have a long and successful career.”
Country areas boast some incredible sporting stars and Newsome has a message for any aspiring regional player wanting to make it to the top level.
“People have to give themselves every opportunity and prepare to have a crack at things that they might doubt themselves,” he said.
“Take every opportunity that comes up and obviously you might have to make a few sacrifices along the way. But if people want to reach certain goals, especially in sport, I think they just have to be focused and make the most of every opportunity.”
With Super Rugby taking a break until early July, Newsome took the opportunity to return back to the place where it all started.
“I have just been home for the last week. So I caught up with a lot of people around town, family and friends, and they are always keen to know how things are going. So it was good to get back and spend some time at home,” he said.
Newsome is happy to call the West Australian capital his new home.
“It is a good spot to live. Perth is a lovely city, it is quite relaxed, traffic is not as bad as Sydney, there are nice beaches and everything is low-key. So I really enjoy it over there,” he said.