Australian rugby union player Will Genia arrives for a Wallabies training session in Sydney.
Australian rugby union player Will Genia arrives for a Wallabies training session in Sydney. PAUL MILLER

Genia hits back at claims of being 'too old, too slow'

RUGBY: Will Genia has defended himself and fellow veterans Drew Mitchell, Matt Giteau and Adam Ashley-Cooper ahead of Saturday's crucial clash with South Africa in the Rugby Championship at Suncorp Stadium.

Genia and Mitchell are the only ones remaining in the Wallabies squad after Giteau and Ashley-Cooper returned to their club sides with injury.

The 28-year-old spent time on the sidelines himself with a knee problem but is now the No.1 choice at scrum-half and said both he and the others had deserved their places.

"Apparently we're too old, too slow and don't have anything to offer,” Genia said.

"That's just people's opinions at the end of the day.

"People speak about us bringing back experience but we've got to be playing well enough to be selected so we can contribute to the team.

"If the coaches and selectors didn't think we were good enough we wouldn't be here.”

Genia, who plies his trade for French club side Stade Francais, was one of the better players in the two Bledisloe Cup defeats to the All Blacks.

He said his injury was now behind him.

"I had a good seven months off before playing that first game and my knee feels really good,” he said.

"Physically and mentally I feel like I'm in a good space, I'll just keep trucking along.

"I feel like I'm going all right but at the end of the day, we've still come up short.”


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