Rising star Adam Coleman has put his Wallabies dreams on the backburner as he attempts to drag the Western Force out of their Super Rugby funk.
With his bullocking runs, bone-bruising defence and line-out nous, Coleman is viewed as a Wallaby-in-waiting by many rugby experts.
Although Coleman is unlikely to make this year’s World Cup squad, Wallabies coach Michael Cheika has been keeping close tabs on the 23-year-old’s progress.
Coleman has flourished in Super ranks this season, but the same can’t be said of the Force, who sit in last spot with just three rounds remaining.
Given the team’s lowly position, Coleman is putting any thoughts of a Wallabies’ call-up to the back of his mind.
“I don’t even think about that to be honest,” Coleman said ahead of Saturday night’s clash with Queensland at nib Stadium.
“My main goal is to play well for my team, and for my mates, and trying to get that `W’ on the weekend.”
Coleman grew up in Tasmania before joining the Brumbies’ Academy in 2010.
The 122kg lock made his Super debut for NSW as an injury replacement in 2013, before enjoying a breakout season with the Force last year.
It seems only a matter of time before Coleman represents the Wallabies, and the 204cm giant can’t wait for his chance to come.
“Growing up, I’ve always wanted to play for the Wallabies,” Coleman said.
“It’s been my life goal.
“And playing Super Rugby – it’s an unreal feeling knowing that you possibly could achieve your lifetime goal.
Saturday’s match is set to play a decisive role in the wooden spoon battle, with the Reds sitting just two points ahead of the last-placed Force.
Queensland have been bolstered by the return of star flyhalf Quade Cooper, who has spent the past two months sidelined because of a fractured scapula.
Winger Lachie Turner replaces injured speedster Chris Kuridrani (calf).
“Quade was given the all clear 10 days ago but we wanted to keep working on his strength and bulk just to ensure we didn’t compromise his return,” Reds coach Richard Graham said.
“He has been training with the squad now for about three weeks and will have no problems returning to play at this level.”
The Force have named an unchanged squad from the one that lost 23-3 to the Highlanders last week.
Reds: James O’Connor, Chris Feauai-Sautia, Karmichael Hunt, Samu Kerevi, Lachie Turner, Quade Cooper, Will Genia, Jake Schatz, Liam Gill, Adam Thomson, James Horwill, Rob Simmons, Greg Holmes, James Hanson, James Slipper (capt). Res: Andrew Ready, Pettowa Paraka, Sam Talakai, Ed O’Donoghue, Beau Robinson, Nick Frisby, Jake McIntyre, Ben Tapuai (one to be omitted).
Force: Dane Haylett-Petty, Luke Morahan, Marcel Brache, Kyle Godwin, Nick Cummins, Sias Ebersohn, Ryan Louwrens, Ben McCalman, Matt Hodgson (capt), Angus Cottrell, Adam Coleman, Steve Mafi, Tetera Faulkner, Nathan Charles, Pek Cowan. Res: Heath Tessmann, Chris Heiberg, Guy Millar, Sam Wykes, Kane Koteka, Alby Mathewson, Luke Burton, Patrick Dellit