Robinson debuts in first Waratahs game

He barely gave himself a pass mark, but Super Rugby convert Reece Robinson left quite an impression in his first proper hit-out for the NSW Waratahs.

The former NRL speedster was among his team’s best in Saturday’s first pre-season trial match against the Brumbies in Wagga Wagga, running elusively and setting up a try in the 21-17 victory.

“I didn’t find it was too bad, but I was pretty unhappy with some of my efforts,” Robinson said.

“Just a few little finishes I should’ve done better, but it’s the first little hit-out so hopefully I can keep working on that.”

Robinson spent the past eight years in rugby league, with stints in Brisbane, Canberra and Parramatta.

He joined the Waratahs on a two-year-old deal, following in the footsteps of one of the most successful code hoppers, Israel Folau.

Asked whether he had any regrets, Robinson said: “Nah. You can’t regret it if you match the switch.

“I’m really enjoying it at the moment … and I’m sure I’m going to enjoy it a lot more.

“I’ve just got to keep backing myself and hopefully keep performing, get better each week.”

The 28-year-old, who scored 57 tries in 116 first-grade NRL games, was full of praise for his new club and coach Daryl Gibson, who he said had helped make the transition a smooth one.

Dave Dennis, who filled in as Waratahs captain for the trial in Michael Hooper’s absence, said he was “very impressed” with Robinson’s debut and that of former All Black Zac Guildford who played at fullback.

“He (Robinson) adjusted well and he’s only going to get better,” Dennis told AAP.

“He had some really nice touches, came off the wing and got involved and defended quite well. So it was really positive.”

He said Robinson had a healthy drive to improve.

“Anyone who makes that transition, it’s a big call in their careers, they really want to come over and make a name for themselves and play well,” Dennis added.

“He’s still learning the game and he’s a guy that will really be a valuable team member for this year.”

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