Aussie Rugby Talent Opts for Greener Pastures: Wallabies Star Switches to NRL

In a blow to the 15-man game in Australia, rising Wallabies star Carter Gordon has decided to switch from rugby union to rugby league, signing a 2-year contract with the Gold Coast Titans. This comes on the heels of another young Wallaby, Mark Nawaqanitawase, also making the move to the NRL. Dual-code international Mat Rogers has criticized Rugby Australia’s ‘inept administration’ as a key factor behind these high-profile defections, suggesting the governing body’s decisions have left a ‘bitter taste’ for players like Gordon.

Wallabies Playmaker Gordon Opts for Rugby League Move

BBC Rugby Union

[Published: March 2023 | Source: BBC]

Dual-code international Mat Rogers has expressed his criticism of Rugby Australia’s administration after rising Wallabies playmaker Carter Gordon decided to switch from rugby union to rugby league earlier this week.

Gordon, who was part of Australia’s 2023 Rugby World Cup squad, has signed a two-year contract with NRL outfit the Gold Coast Titans. The 23-year-old is the second Wallaby to make the move to the 13-man code, following in the footsteps of Waratahs flyer Mark Nawaqanitawase, who will join the Sydney Roosters in 2025.

“Rogers, who represented Australia in both rugby union and rugby league, believes the departure of these young talents is a result of ’20 years of inept administration’ that has put the game in its current predicament. He suggests Gordon was ‘the right man, but the wrong time’ to be the Wallabies’ fly-half, as the governing body’s decision to axe the Melbourne Rebels franchise, where Gordon played his Super Rugby Pacific rugby, may have left a ‘bitter taste’ for the player.”

Despite his disappointment, Rogers is confident that Gordon will thrive in rugby league, praising his running game, kicking ability, and handling skills. The 48-year-old expects the transition to the 13-man code to initially be challenging, but believes the Titans will benefit greatly from Gordon’s arrival.

Meanwhile, former Wallabies and Waratahs back-row Stephen Hoiles echoed the sentiment, expressing his disappointment at losing a promising talent from the rugby union game. Hoiles acknowledged that Gordon was firmly in the mix to be considered one of the best fly-halves in Australian rugby in the coming years.

The departure of Gordon and Nawaqanitawase to rugby league has been viewed as a significant blow to the 15-man code in the country, as the Wallabies seek to rebuild and challenge for the Rugby World Cup title in the years ahead.

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