Melbourne’s boy wonder Jack Maddocks has made a compelling case for a Wallabies debut against Ireland with a starring performance in his team’s Super Rugby win over the Sunwolves.

The 21-year-old winger was a stand-out at AAMI Park, scoring two tries to take his season tally to eight as the Rebels romped to a 40-13 result.

Maddocks also had two line-breaks, five tackle busts and 11 runs, posing a threat most times he had the ball in hand.

Wallabies assistant coach Stephen Larkham was in the stands, with the Test team for the three-match series against the Six Nations champions to be named next Wednesday,

Maddocks went on the Wallabies’ spring tour as a development player but Rebels captain and Test lock Adam Coleman said he was ready for the big stage.

“He’s a talent and I think he’s done everything he can do to put his best foot forward for selection,” Coleman said post match.

“I’m sure his time will come in that jersey.

“He’s a character on and off the field and he’s a great asset to our team.”

As well as his attacking prowess from the wing or at fullback, where he has started a number of games, the rangy former Sydneysider known as “Maddog” is a keen defender.

In a key moment early in the second half he pulled off a try-saving tackle, racing across the field to bring down flying Sunwolves winger Hosea Saumaki.

Reece Hodge also gave Wallabies selectors something to think about in his first start for the Rebels at five-eighth.

Hodge wore the ten jersey in the Wallabies’ Test against Japan late last year but has been preferred as a centre for Melbourne.

With a lack of depth in the position behind regular Test five-eighth Bernard Foley, Hodge showed he could be a capable back-up, often taking on the Sunwolves line.

“I think he did a good job and controlled the game well,” said Rebels coach Dave Wesels.

“He brings a real physical presence to that position which I think is great.

“Sometimes he might not make the right decision as a ten but if he doesn’t he’s got the physical capacity to put the ball under his wing and go forward.”

The Rebels face the Blues in Auckland next Saturday in their last game before the June Test window.

© AAP 2018
State of Origin 2 is here, with the Blues looking to wrap the 2018 series up and the Maroons hoping to keep it alive and force a decider. Follow along with our NSW vs QLD Origin 2 live scores and blog.

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The Crowd Says (47)

  • May 26th 2018 @ 2:31pm
    ThugbyFan said | May 26th 2018 @ 2:31pm | ! Report

    I honestly don’t think #10 is R.Hodge’s position, I see him as an inside centre. Pass is slow and looped, not straight and spinning into the chest. In Koroibete’s 2nd try, Hodge passed to DHP, which was a hospital pass if the defence was quick and in your face like we see most Kiwi and SA sides do. I haven’t seen any short kicking game either. Hodge may come good but I doubt it will ever be top shelf.

    I would like to see Jack Maddocks swap with Hodge for the last 20 minutes if the game is safe, and see what he can do. Hodge plays winger in test matches so no problem putting him there and let Maddocks have a run at #10. I read somewhere that Maddocks played nearly all his junior rugby at 5/8, so its not like the position is new for him.

    • May 26th 2018 @ 2:32pm
      ThugbyFan said | May 26th 2018 @ 2:32pm | ! Report

      WHoot, 1st post! Do I get a chocolate or something? 🙂

      • May 26th 2018 @ 2:37pm
        Dave_S said | May 26th 2018 @ 2:37pm | ! Report

        Here’s a kiss x 😉

        Agree on Hodge. I like him as a footballer but at best he’s a backup 10, and provided he has a strong-passing 9 and 12 either side. He’s a 12 or or my view a 13 prospect, long-term.

        Maddocks looks the real deal, seems to have a footy brain, not just physical attributes. Like to see him tried st 10 eventually but looks good in the back 3 for now.

        • Roar Pro

          May 27th 2018 @ 1:47pm
          Melburnian said | May 27th 2018 @ 1:47pm | ! Report

          Agree Hodge is merely a backup #10 but given how awful Debreczini is, the backup is better than the principal.

          • May 27th 2018 @ 1:55pm
            Fionn said | May 27th 2018 @ 1:55pm | ! Report

            Send Maddocks to 10, Hodge to 12.

            Jack Deb can fight for the fullback spot. If he gets it then DHP to one wing and Koroibete or Naivalu on the other. If Deb doesn’t get the fullback spot then bench and Naivalu and Koroibete on the wings with DHP at fullback.

            • May 27th 2018 @ 3:07pm
              cuw said | May 27th 2018 @ 3:07pm | ! Report

              Hodge will need to learn to pass – a lot – if he has to play in centers.

              against a second string team lacking any cohesion he may look good , but international opposition will just eat him up all day.

    • May 26th 2018 @ 2:44pm
      Rhys Bosley said | May 26th 2018 @ 2:44pm | ! Report

      Practice makes perfect and Hodge comes across to me as the sort of committed player who would address those sorts of skills issues, especially under the likes of Larkham and Byrne. He has a huge boot from the hand, can kick goals, run and tackle, so I wouldn’t be writing him off being able to develop into an international quality fly half at only 23 years old. Even Barrett only started to get regular starts at 25, Hodge has got heaps of time.

      • May 26th 2018 @ 2:56pm
        Dave_S said | May 26th 2018 @ 2:56pm | ! Report

        Perhaps, I agree Hodge has talent and commitment, but Larkham and Byrne don’t seem to have worked any magic on anyone else. I can’t think of any player who has substantially grown or changed under them. Why not play Hodge where he looks more natural now? We are also short of good centres.

        • May 27th 2018 @ 11:39am
          Dontcallmeshirley said | May 27th 2018 @ 11:39am | ! Report

          He can’t pass. Hide him on the wing

    • Roar Rookie

      May 26th 2018 @ 2:51pm
      Paul D said | May 26th 2018 @ 2:51pm | ! Report

      Hodge doesnt have it. He’s not a flyhalf. When he’s passing (or shoveling it on more like) he’s flat footed. When he hits the ball at pace he doesnt pass. Very predictable.

      He’s not light enough on his feet to be a gap running 10. He doesn’t have a change of direction. And his passing is way too poor to be a distributer.

      He’s a centre with a bit of playmaking at best. He’d be better served making 12 or 13, or wherever it is he fits in his own and staying there.

  • Roar Rookie

    May 26th 2018 @ 2:56pm
    Paul D said | May 26th 2018 @ 2:56pm | ! Report

    Maddocks would be worth investing in with some test experience. He’s got alot more upside than DHP, for example.

    • May 26th 2018 @ 3:58pm
      Dave_S said | May 26th 2018 @ 3:58pm | ! Report

      Agree, if any back is to be fast tracked into the WBs this year, he is the best bet for a ROI.

      • Roar Guru

        May 27th 2018 @ 10:51am
        PeterK said | May 27th 2018 @ 10:51am | ! Report

        Banks would be a better investment for rwc 2019

  • May 26th 2018 @ 4:38pm
    Cynical Play said | May 26th 2018 @ 4:38pm | ! Report

    For mine, depends a bit on the rest of the back-line 23, but start with Hodge and Kor on wings for test 1. Maddocks off the bench then start him game 2 if he lives up to the hype. Test 1 against a rugged, barn-storming Irish side is no place to start-blood a relatively inexperienced 21-year-old winger, no matter how promising. I wouldn’t have DHP anywhere near this 23.

    I agree with commentators above re Hodge being a 12. Last night he played like a 2nd 5/8 all night. He has not got good 5/8 positional instinct and he does not play-make in the typical way. I really hope Cheika doesn’t pursue this. Back-up to Foley for now will have to be Beale. I’d blood Hamish Stuart and I’d like to see the Rebels run Maddocks at 10 for part of a game so we can all have a look.

    Hodge offers a great alternative to the Beale 2nd 5/8 style and I’d love to see him outside Foley at some point.

    • May 26th 2018 @ 4:47pm
      Ken Catchpole’s Other Leg said | May 26th 2018 @ 4:47pm | ! Report

      All fair Cynical.
      However, we are discussing which 10 to develop as a back up to our incumbent and limited 10. (Brave, committed, talented, but limited)
      And this development discussion is happening a year out from a World Cup.
      What could possibly go wrong?

      • May 26th 2018 @ 4:56pm
        Dave_S said | May 26th 2018 @ 4:56pm | ! Report


      • May 26th 2018 @ 7:28pm
        Cynical Play said | May 26th 2018 @ 7:28pm | ! Report

        Agree it’s 5 to midnight on the backup 10 for the RWC clock.

    • May 26th 2018 @ 5:00pm
      Dave_S said | May 26th 2018 @ 5:00pm | ! Report

      Stewart is yet to play a decent game for the Reds, I wouldn’t have him anywhere near a WB squad atm.

      Agree Beale is the only viable 10 backup and Maddocks a wildcard.

      • May 26th 2018 @ 7:30pm
        Cynical Play said | May 26th 2018 @ 7:30pm | ! Report

        Stuart has what Lance has not but Thorn ain’t risking it. Keeps him at 15. He’s a 10 and I would take him on EOYT. Not talking June or RC.

        • May 26th 2018 @ 8:10pm
          Dave_S said | May 26th 2018 @ 8:10pm | ! Report

          Anything that Stewart has, he hasn’t demonstrated it at SR level yet. Not taking him on any tour on the basis of NRC or U20s performances.

        • May 27th 2018 @ 3:11pm
          cuw said | May 27th 2018 @ 3:11pm | ! Report

          Thorn is not risking breaking a guy.

          he does not want to put a rookie against tried and tested 10s who will eat him up alive.

          few young guys who were thrown in the deep end have ended up so-so …

  • Roar Guru

    May 26th 2018 @ 5:36pm
    Timbo (L) said | May 26th 2018 @ 5:36pm | ! Report

    I think Maddocks is doing a great job, runs some good angles has some genuine pace and isn’t afraid to make the hard tackles.

    But then again, so Is Tom Banks. Would Pick Either of them ahead of Folau at 15,
    If I had to, I would choose Folau over Maddocks at 14, but only by a whisker. There is more to rugby than catching a High ball.

    • May 26th 2018 @ 6:06pm
      Dave_S said | May 26th 2018 @ 6:06pm | ! Report

      Man I’ll have some of whatever you’re smokin’ 😉

      • May 26th 2018 @ 7:30pm
        Cynical Play said | May 26th 2018 @ 7:30pm | ! Report

        Hydro it seems.

      • Roar Guru

        May 27th 2018 @ 9:47am
        Timbo (L) said | May 27th 2018 @ 9:47am | ! Report

        I am not the one with Sky Blue Glaucoma.
        In a world first, the fox commentators had some valuable things to say.

        Maddocks not only scored tries, He also saves them.
        There was also a comment on why Thorn won’t play QC. Thorn has a focus on defense and if a player won’t tackle, he doesn’t get a run.

        Maddocks scored 2 and saved at least 2 and that was against a 15 man side. That gives him a total of 4 for the day.

        For all of Folau’s Aerial brilliance, if he isn’t going to defend, it needs to be twice as good as the next guy if he is going to earn his spot. His backfield positioning was woeful last night and the Chiefs exploited it.
        The Chiefs were awful at defending him. The Irish are going to do what scotland did, starve him of ball, by pressuring foley or not kicking it to him, contesting the mark or having a guy ready to tackle him when he lands. Much like the Saders did in their victorious second half

        • May 27th 2018 @ 6:17pm
          cuw said | May 27th 2018 @ 6:17pm | ! Report

          Ireland will bring some quick wings – so where Folau plays will be interesting.

          u just cant let guys run around u on the touchline !

          • Roar Guru

            May 28th 2018 @ 10:06am
            Timbo (L) said | May 28th 2018 @ 10:06am | ! Report

            Cheika has already indicated that Folau will play 15.

  • May 27th 2018 @ 8:27am
    Fionn said | May 27th 2018 @ 8:27am | ! Report

    Banks is superior to Maddocks as a back three player I think.

    But I guess I would say that.

    • Roar Guru

      May 27th 2018 @ 9:57am
      Timbo (L) said | May 27th 2018 @ 9:57am | ! Report

      Horses for courses. (No this isn’t a clumsy Brumby Pun.
      In my opinion, Banks is our best fullback but I think Maddocks has an extra yard of pace which makes him better for the wing. The 2 of them would make a great Smith Dagg 14/15 combo in the future.

      With Folau’s #15 Jersey for life we will see Hodge at 14 and Banks and Maddocks being pursued by the European clubs with the usual result.

      • May 27th 2018 @ 10:02am
        Fionn said | May 27th 2018 @ 10:02am | ! Report

        I’m definitely not convinced Maddocks is faster than Banks.

        Maddocks is more of a ball player though. I think the eventual move to 10 will be a success.

        • Roar Guru

          May 27th 2018 @ 10:55am
          PeterK said | May 27th 2018 @ 10:55am | ! Report

          agree Banks is significantly faster than Maddocks, just behind Naivalue and Koriebete but more evasive, but not as evasive as Dauganu.

          Maddocks would not be quicker than Folau.

          An issue re Maddocks at 10 is his lack of pace off the mark, like Hodge, so he doesn’t add that running threat at 10 since the defence is so close.

          • Roar Guru

            May 27th 2018 @ 11:23am
            Timbo (L) said | May 27th 2018 @ 11:23am | ! Report

            I don’t know what games you are watching but I see the exact opposite.

            I am not 100% o the Banks Maddocks footrace, they haven’t gone head to head. They are both quick.

            Folau is a slug by comparison. Runs like a 13, and that is a good thing considering where and how he plays. Explosive off the mark, big unit, agile step, but not a coast to coast runner and doesn’t chase.

            We need Daugunu to get his residency.

            • Roar Guru

              May 27th 2018 @ 11:52am
              PeterK said | May 27th 2018 @ 11:52am | ! Report

              I have seen maddocks at top speed be caught from behind multiple times, also chasing quite quick wingers he gets left behind fairly easily, hence why I don’t think he has genuine pace.

            • Roar Guru

              May 27th 2018 @ 12:26pm
              Timbo (L) said | May 27th 2018 @ 12:26pm | ! Report

              If you are talking about the South African guys like Lleyds, they are seriously quick and to be chased down by them is not a huge insult. It is also harder to run with the ball than without. At that speed, it all makes a difference.

              Genuine pace is for the 11. In my modern game, I am happy to see a wing/fullback.with some kicking skills at the cst of a little bit of speed.

            • Roar Guru

              May 27th 2018 @ 12:42pm
              PeterK said | May 27th 2018 @ 12:42pm | ! Report

              timbo – who was discussing the merits of an 11 v a 14 here anyway.

              The simple discussion was the speed of Maddocks v Banks.

              Maddocks is suitable for 14 and 15, Banks with his extra pace (significantly faster than Maddocks) is suited for all 3 back positions.

            • Roar Pro

              May 27th 2018 @ 2:04pm
              Melburnian said | May 27th 2018 @ 2:04pm | ! Report

              “We need Daugunu to get his residency.”
              This got me wondering because I agree Daugunu is an extraordinary talent. But I think he may well be ineligible because he played U20s for Fiji. World Rugby regulation 8.3(d) seems to indicate that a player that plays U20s for a Union cannot subsequently play for another Union. If I’m reading this right then he’s committed to Fiji. Would love to be proved wrong on this.

            • Roar Guru

              May 27th 2018 @ 2:31pm
              PeterK said | May 27th 2018 @ 2:31pm | ! Report

              no u20’s doesn’t lock you in

            • May 27th 2018 @ 3:18pm
              cuw said | May 27th 2018 @ 3:18pm | ! Report

              World Rugby announces changes to Eligibility regulations
              May 10, 2017

              1) The 36-month residency requirement is increased to 60 months with effect from 31 December, 2020. (unanimously approved)

              As promised, the heavily-criticed residency rule has been stretched from three years to five. This means that countries will no longer be able to import players in the first year of a new World Cup cycle and be able to select them at the next tournament, and should put a swift end to the concept of ‘project players’ currently in use by several nations.

              While the effective date may seem far off, what it actually means is that any player who moves to a new country after December 31 of this year will have to wait a full five years before representing that country. Players already signed for their clubs will only have to wait the three years. World Rugby had said previously there would be a ‘grace period’ and that seems to have been the bargaining chip used to gain unanimous support with the likes of Scotland and Ireland known to be opposed to the change previously.

              Short term examples could be Bundee Aki playing for Ireland or Willis Halaholo representing Wales, but those types of signings will surely slow down dramatically. Some have argued that extending the residency law will only entice rich nations to plunder players from lesser nations at a younger age. That line of thinking ignores that fact that this is already taking place, and that such signings have a much greater risk attached financially than purchasing a player proven at senior level.

              2) The addition of a residency criteria which permits players who have 10 years of cumulative residency to be eligible, effective 10 May, 2017. (unanimously approved)

              This is a new form of achieving residency that says that a player who moved to a country at a young age and lived there until his late teens but then moved to another country on a professional contract will still retain their residency qualifications. The five-year residency rule is applied consecutively, meaning that should a player live in a country for four years and then move away for one year, the player’s residency clock starts at zero should they return to the previous country. This could mean, for example, that a player born in Samoa who then moved to New Zealand at a young age would not lose their eligibility to play for New Zealand if they move abroad for a short-term overseas contract.

              3) Unions may no longer nominate their U20s team as their next senior national representative team, effective 1 January, 2018. (majority)

              This removes a country’s ability to ‘capture’ senior eligibility based on playing for a country’s national u20 side, and removes confusing situations where some u20 or Senior ‘A’ fixtures were considered ‘binding’ or not. For example England Saxons recently traveled to play South Africa ‘A’, but because South Africa had nominated their u20 side as their ‘next senior representative team’, the matches did not count towards the eligibility regulations, an obviously ridiculous situation.

              Unions affected by this rule include: Belgium, Chinese Taipei, England (women), Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Italy, Mexico, the Netherlands, Portugal, Russia, Scotland (women), and South Africa.

              4) Sevens players will only be captured for the purposes of Regulation 8 where the player has represented either of (i) the senior national representative sevens team of a union where the player has reached the age of 20 on or before the date of participation; or (ii) the national representative sevens team of a union in the Olympic Games or Rugby World Cup Sevens, having reached the age of majority on or before the date of participation in such tournament, effective 1 July, 2017. (majority)

              Simply put, what this means is that a player under the age of 20 who represents a country in sevens will still maintain their eligibility for another nation should they meet the criteria. If Player A plays for Samoa at 19 years old but has a German father, that player can still represent Germany in the future. The exception is the Olympics, where the age of majority for that country is the deciding factor.

              Previously a player was captured at 18 years or older. A recent example of this is Thretton Palamo, who represented Samoa in sevens at the age of 17, and then went on to play for the US Eagles. Under the new rule he could have played for Samoa up until 19 years of age and still represented the USA afterwards.

            • Roar Guru

              May 28th 2018 @ 10:11am
              Timbo (L) said | May 28th 2018 @ 10:11am | ! Report


              The discussion got conflated,…. by you.

              Banks Faster than Maddocks – I don’t think so, you do. It is difficult to prove either way. I don’t understand how you can say it with certainty.

              Maddocks being chased down by a winger – no big deal. My point was 11’s tend to be quicker than 14’s in a straight line.

          • May 27th 2018 @ 12:00pm
            Fionn said | May 27th 2018 @ 12:00pm | ! Report

            Daugunu’s evasion is just incredible. Reminds me a bit of peak JOC around 2010/11 in that he can step people from a standing start as well as at pace, but with more speed and acceleration than JOC.

            Just needs to massively improve his defence.

            • May 27th 2018 @ 4:54pm
              cuw said | May 27th 2018 @ 4:54pm | ! Report

              7S player – they either go around like Daugunu , Isles , tuwai … or thru them like Lam , Vakatawa , Tuisova…

        • Roar Guru

          May 27th 2018 @ 11:13am
          Timbo (L) said | May 27th 2018 @ 11:13am | ! Report

          Banks is a bigger unit. to my eye, he takes a bit to wind up and in the Brumbies game, the winger in cover defense got to him, Poey was shadowing him. He was moderating his run through traffic so it wasn’t at full noise,
          Maddocks is more agile and hits the line at speed, leaves his chasers behind. I can see why Larkham wants him to move to 10. a Bit of a Bodey Barratt thing. Banks is more Jordy/ Ben Smith

          As I said though, I think they are suited to different positions. Maddocks doesn’t have as good backfield vision or tactics that Banks does. Banks has been on my watch list since he tore apart my Perh spirit when he was playing for Queensland country. Maddocks needs another year before he fruits.

          With a bit of Luck Folau goes to Play for the Warriors next year and we can have a modern back 3 with Banks and Maddocks in a Batman and Robin Dynamic Duo and a proper ‘ard man over at 11..

          A girl can dream…..

        • Roar Rookie

          May 27th 2018 @ 4:58pm
          Paul D said | May 27th 2018 @ 4:58pm | ! Report

          Can either of then run down Reiko Ioane?

          • May 27th 2018 @ 5:09pm
            cuw said | May 27th 2018 @ 5:09pm | ! Report

            according to NZ commentary – TONI PULU is the fastest wing in NZ.

          • May 27th 2018 @ 9:51pm
            Fionn said | May 27th 2018 @ 9:51pm | ! Report

            Has there ever been a Tah you don’t spruik for the Wallabies 😉?

            • Roar Rookie

              May 28th 2018 @ 9:48am
              Paul D said | May 28th 2018 @ 9:48am | ! Report

              Easy fishing this is. 🙂

              I don’t see Cam Clark as a Wallaby. Yes he’s got pace to burn, big heart and is tough as nails. He’s a good honest footballer, but doesn’t possess that bit extra to take him to the next level.

            • May 28th 2018 @ 11:09am
              Fionn said | May 28th 2018 @ 11:09am | ! Report

              No yet no, but he’s still young and has a lot of time to mature as a player, so who knows?

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