Newly-returned Wallabies captain Stephen Moore isn’t interested in crystal-ball gazing.
So if you ask him how deep Australia can go into the Rugby World Cup or if this might be the side that can take back the Bledisloe Cup, expect a blunt answer.
“I’m really reluctant to go out there and say what we’re going to do,” Moore told reporters on Monday, after he was unveiled as the man to lead the Wallabies through the forthcoming Test campaign and to England and Wales in September.
“I’m not really big on forecasting outcomes, ‘this is the year’ or that kind of thing.
“It’s all about preparing well and going out there on a day and giving it your all.
“I’m just keen on getting the process right and giving ourselves the chance to win the game.”
That is the kind of skipper Moore promises to be – one that leads by example, not direction.
The 32-year-old received the nod ahead of the incumbent Michael Hooper, who took over the role when Moore went down with a season-ending knee injury, one minute into his first game as Test captain last year against France.
Moore will get the chance at a do-over next Saturday night, when the Wallabies face South Africa at Suncorp Stadium in the opening match of a condensed Rugby Championship.
Almost a full year on from his own personal nightmare and the one Australia endured through the 2014 international season, Moore senses he is in charge of a team that is a more harmonious unit than ever before.
“That’s been a real obvious growth for us so far,” he said.
“We’ve already built a lot of that stuff in the background – just having those special bonds between the players that I think we haven’t had as strong as we could have in the past.”
Coach Michael Cheika said he had admired Moore from afar as he led the Brumbies to within a game of the Super Rugby final, and believes he is the right man to lead the Wallabies alongside vice-captains Hooper and Adam Ashley-Cooper.
“The complementary nature of the three of those lads and the different parts that they cover, led by Stephen, is a nice little starter point to our leadership team,” he said.
“Leadership’s going to be a really big part of this Australian team becoming better.
“I know they’ll split the roles across the team and Michael will certainly not go backwards.
“This is part of his development as well, into one day becoming the captain of the side also.”
STEPHEN MOORE – WALLABIES SKIPPER
Caps: 92 (25 points)
Debut: June 2005 v Samoa in Sydney (Wallabies won 74-7)