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'Done the job': Why Rodda's confident shocking injury run is finally behind him

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18th February, 2024
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Wallabies lock Izack Rodda is optimistic his foot injury woes are finally behind him, revealing a high arch that has now been flattened was the cause of his issues.

Rodda has been sidelined for most of the past 18 months after suffering a series of stress fractures in his right foot.

The 27-year-old missed the 2022 international season as well as last year’s World Cup, and he was also sidelined for almost the entire Super Rugby Pacific season in 2023.

Watch every match of Super Rugby Pacific ad-free, live & on demand on the Home of Rugby, Stan Sport

But successful osteotomy surgery has Rodda feeling confident that he has finally found a permanent fix, with the powerful second rower on track for a Western Force return as early as round two or three.

“My last round of surgery was about four or five months ago … where they flatten out the arch of my foot,” Rodda told AAP.

Izack Rodda. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)

“I had a high arch, which was resulting in a few stress fractures.

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“So they corrected that and shaped it, which has allowed my foot to be more normal.

“That has helped me with running pain-free and offloading those bones that were under a lot of stress.

“I think it’s done the job.”

Unlike the previous rounds of surgery, Rodda noticed a positive flow-on effect to the areas surrounding his foot.

“It feels more free, I’ve got more ankle range, which is something that was very limited in the previous years,” Rodda said.

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“Now my foot feels more like a foot, if that makes sense.

“My left one was alright. My right one was just a bit wonky. Now they’re both the same. They’re actually matching now.”

The Force narrowly missed the finals last year.

The additions of Wallabies scrumhalf Nic White and flyhalf Ben Donaldson are a big boost, and Rodda feels the Force have all the ingredients to make a major splash this year.

“The squad depth has grown dramatically, which is great, it’s what we need. There’s a lot more competition,” said Rodda, who spent four seasons with the Queensland Reds before moving west in 2021.

“We’re striving to win the comp.

“Every team plans to win the final, but this is the first team I’ve been in where I believe it’s a possibility.”

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The long stints on the sidelines gave Rodda a new perspective on rugby and on life.

He got married to his partner Kobe in December, and he’s now itching to get back onto the field.

“You get so caught up in the whole thing of rugby – prepping, training, playing. You get in the mode of rugby, rugby, rugby,” Rodda said.

“But since I got injured, it puts a lot of things into perspective.

“If anything, it grows your love for the game more, because you’re not involved and it shows you why you enjoy it.

“I’m back training now. Besides the lungs blowing out, the foot’s holding up well, which is great. It’s given me a lot of confidence.”

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The Force’s season kicks off against the Hurricanes in Perth on Friday night.

© AAP

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