Brumbies playmaker Christian Lealiifano has fully recovered from his 2012 season-ending ankle injury, stating that if there was a game next week he’d be “ready to go”.
Lealiifano missed the back end of the Super Rugby season after breaking his ankle in the Brumbies’ round 11 win over the NSW Waratahs in May.
It was a cruel blow for the 25-year-old, who not only suffered the injury with his team well up after the final siren, but had catapulted himself into the box seat for a maiden Wallabies Test call-up.
Unable to recover in time for the Wallabies’ European tour in November, Lealiifano told AAP on Wednesday he’d returned to full training within the last month and would be ready for the Brumbies’ trial matches in the new year.
“Everything is coming along really well, I’m running and kicking and tackling again,” he said.
“I had a shoulder reconstruction while I had the ankle injury as well, but everything has progressed really well and on track for the trials and then round one.
“If there was a trial next week I’d be ready to go.”
Yet despite missing a golden opportunity to bolt down the No.10 Wallabies jersey, Lealiifano said he had used the talk surrounding his near-Australia debut to help him get back out on the field bigger and better.
“You never really expect to be thrusted in (to Wallabies contention), your No.1 priority is playing well week-in and week-out for the Brumbies,” he said.
“To sort of know that your name’s been thrown around amongst the mix of other guys playing there is always a little bit frustrating to hear, but it sort of has been a motivating factor in driving myself to get back to where I was, and even better.
“So it’s frustrating but then you turn it around and make it into a positive, motivational kind of thing.”