'Got some good things out of it': New defence coach Hodgson pleased as Wallabies wrap up Gold Coast camp

Thu, Apr 20, 2023, 12:02 AM
Nathan Williamson
by Nathan Williamson
Brett Hodgson is pleased at what he's seen from the first camp under Eddie Jones. Photo: Getty Images
Brett Hodgson is pleased at what he's seen from the first camp under Eddie Jones. Photo: Getty Images

The first camp under Eddie Jones has been wrapped up, with new assistant Brett Hodgson excited with what he has seen.

The three-day camp on the Gold Coast was the first time Jones, Hodgson and the rest of the new coaching staff has been able to have a proper lock at the Wallabies since taking over in January.

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“It’s a new group coming together so we’ve tried to implement some new things in defence and attack. The players’ dedication and commitment to what we’ve asked of them has been nothing short of outstanding," Hodgson told reporters.

“It’s been a great three days…we’ve really enjoyed it and got some good things out of it.

“Nothing surprised me because I knew they would be elite talent hence why they are here. Their willingness to adapt to what we’ve asked them is nothing short of outstanding. From a coaching perspective, I don’t think we could’ve asked for any more.”

Hodgson followed Jones to the Wallabies after signing as England’s defence coach in November last year, outlining effort as a non-negotiable.

“You might do a tackle but you need to look at what’s next rather than being happy with what you have done,” he explained.

“The best defences in any sport are the ones that are connected and willing to work hard for each other.

“You can have the best systems in place but if you aren’t willing to work hard and go beyond your usual means in terms of effort, you’re going to struggle.

"...The players can tackle there’s no doubt about that but it’s about building that connection and understanding what each other are doing at certain times during the game.

“We’ve implemented a day of that. It’s going to take a long time to get to where we want to get to but the combinations have started and we’ve progressed so I’m pleased and looking forward to see how that evolves."

Jones has a history of bringing in coaches with a rugby league background.

Ex-Dragons and Australian front-rower Jason Ryles made sporadic appearances in Jones' English set-up since he took over in 2015.

Former Souths and Broncos coach Anthony Seibold was brought into his coaching staff in 2021.

Hodgson believes there are transferable skills between the two as he looks to tinker with the patterns with just over two months before the Rugby Championship opener on July 9 in Pretoria.

“I think rugby league there is traditionally more of an invested into ruck control and trying to slow that ball being played," he added.

“There are elements that are definitely transferable from rugby league to union. We’re taking the elements I’ve learnt and trying to adapt them to our style of play.

“That will keep evolving over time and the most important thing it that players buy into what we’re asking them

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