Internationals greg eastwood ......

edguy_old

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Still smarting from an injury-enforced test withdrawal, rising New Zealand star Greg Eastwood wants to make up for lost time by filling the big shoes of good friend Benji Marshall at this year's Tri Nations series.

Few doubts remain over Eastwood's utility value after the 102kg teenager effortlessly moved from the backrow to the wing with spectacular success for the Brisbane Broncos this season.

Now the 19-year-old wants to add another position to his repertoire following a season-ending shoulder injury to old mate and Kiwi trump card Marshall - five-eighth.

Eastwood was cruelly denied a test debut for New Zealand when he was struck down by a hamstring complaint just days before flying out for the Kiwis' June 28 clash against Great Britain in England.

After fighting back tears over his withdrawal, Eastwood smiles at the prospect of replacing former Keebra Park High School teammate Marshall at the end-of-year Tri Nations in Australia and New Zealand.

Playing alongside childhood idol Stacey Jones has prompted Eastwood to put his hand up for the vacant five-eighth role - a position where he starred for the Junior Kiwis last year.

Jones postponed his international retirement following New Zealand's 46-14 loss to Great Britain at St Helens last week in a bid to seek Tri Nations revenge.

"Benji's gone so hopefully I can get a halves spot and work alongside Stacey," he said.

"I played a lot of five-eighth at school (Gold Coast's Keebra Park) and for the Junior Kiwis.

"Learning from Stacey would be awesome. He's always been my favourite player ever since I started watching rugby league.

"It's outstanding what he can do with the ball. If I was able to play alongside him I would be over the moon.

"But anywhere in the Kiwi team would be awesome."

Eastwood - who moved to the Gold Coast from Auckland five years ago - said Tri Nations success would ease the pain of his recent test withdrawal.

"Just as I had hit my straps and got the test call-up my hammy went - that was my lowest point so far," he said.

Eastwood was jolted out of the doldrums when he returned a week earlier than expected from injury to chime into a heavily depleted Brisbane's 26-12 gutsy upset over Cronulla last round.

"That brought my spirits back up," Eastwood laughed.

He may be a product of the Gold Coast's Keebra Park program but Eastwood said he was never tempted to follow the path of Brisbane teammate Karmichael Hunt.

Kiwi-born Hunt controversially pledged his allegiance to Australia so he could play State of Origin for Queensland.

And there's a good reason why Eastwood stayed loyal to his Kiwi roots.

"I'd probably get into too much trouble from my uncles and cousins, I wouldn't hear the end of it," he laughed.

"Even though I am living over here and they have a good system here I am a proud Kiwi and always will be.

"I love Origin. I always watch the game with a few mates. Sometimes it is in the back of my mind what it would be like to play (Origin).

"It's one of the world's best games to be in but I chose my destiny."
 

edguy_old

Guest
good to see how loyal , eastwood is ....
wonder what he thinks of hunt?? lol
 

Samoan Souljah_old

Guest
another proud young kiwi good to hear! .. i forgot who karmichael hunt was when i heard he wanted to play for aussie lol .. so here i go again KARMICHAEL WHO? .. lol .. joax .. he is a good player but if he picked the kiwis id like him abit more lol .. good work eastwood keep playing for the kiwis and youll have my support lol
 

warriors4life_old

Guest
Eastwood is a fine player, and a good prospect for the future but I really can't see him succeeding at five/eighth, just doesn't have the skill and attributes to play there, but he will be an integral part of the team nonetheless.
 

Guest

Guest
Gotta love the passion from the guy. And he's ambitious too - obviously not intimidated by filling in for Benji. He deserves a spot in the team at the end of the year if he keeps playing like he has done so far this season. Wherever he may end up playing.
 

Skinny_Ravs82

Guest
Good on the kid. Am glad he's made his decison nice and early. Something Hunt should recognize. But looking at things, I'm actually glad Hunt doesn't want to play for the kiwis. he's a disgrace! but back to eastwood thou...he's got some fine potencial
 

commonsense_old

Guest
he is an awesome player. see him more of a lock or centre. but i heard he can more than hold his own in the halves. i would prefer eastwood there than vagana or faumuina.
 

Kiwi League_old

Guest
Give him a run in the halves for sure; this guy is chock full of confidence but the thing is: he can back it up. His performances for the Broncos have been outstanding.
 

MiXmasterreece_old

Guest
warriors4life said:
Eastwood is a fine player, and a good prospect for the future but I really can't see him succeeding at five/eighth, just doesn't have the skill and attributes to play there, but he will be an integral part of the team nonetheless.

I disagree Eastwood has the vision, pace and distrbution skills to be a more than ample replacement for Benji come Tri Nations time.

Also he has a BIG left boot on him, something we have seen alot of yet but from seeing him play pre NRL it was evident.
 

warriors4life_old

Guest
MiXmasterreece said:
warriors4life said:
Eastwood is a fine player, and a good prospect for the future but I really can't see him succeeding at five/eighth, just doesn't have the skill and attributes to play there, but he will be an integral part of the team nonetheless.

I disagree Eastwood has the vision, pace and distrbution skills to be a more than ample replacement for Benji come Tri Nations time.

Also he has a BIG left boot on him, something we have seen alot of yet but from seeing him play pre NRL it was evident.

Granted, but I'm yet to see any kicking skills from him and he hasn't really proved himself in that position yet. To be the Kiwis five/eighth he actually has to play there and show the selectors what he is capable of.
 

Esoj_old

Guest
good to see a young player keen to play for the kiwis instead of waiting to make up his mind.

also good to see him putting his hand up to replace benji for the tri-nations.
 

edguy_old

Guest
apparently phil gould has a high opinion of eastwood , too ,.
he was raving about him on the broncos vs stormers game last nite..
 

warriorfaithful*_old

Guest
edguy said:
apparently phil gould has a high opinion of eastwood , too ,.
he was raving about him on the broncos vs stormers game last nite..

Yu mean storm not stormers pretty much same though lol.

And yeah eastwood a talented youngster i heard phil gould giving him raps.
 

edguy_old

Guest
no i ment stormers .....lol

i always call them that .... or storm troopers ..