Rod Davies.
Rod Davies. Kristen Burrows

Davies sees upside of setback

BE THANKFUL for small mercies.

That's how Rod Davies is viewing his latest injury setback on the eve of the Super Rugby season.

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It would be easy for the former Ipswich Grammar star to wallow in self pity, after his latest hamstring strain ruled him out of the Queensland Reds trial matches and has him battling to be fit for round one of the new season.

Despite his poor history with hamstring problems, Davies, the fastest man in Australian rugby, is looking on the bright side of this latest setback.

"I've just had a little ping on my left one (hamstring), where I haven't had a problem for years," the winger said of the moment he felt the all-too-familiar pain.

"This one is my other hamstring, so it's no correlation to the previous injuries."

Davies, 22, is confident he will be fit for the opening round of the Super Rugby season and said he would be happy to play wherever coach Ewan McKenzie thought he was most value to the team.

"I came to the Reds to play fullback but it's not really a major thing if I play on the wing, as long as I'm in the team," Davies said yesterday.

After the highs of last year, where the speedster was a key member of the Reds' title-winning team before making his Wallaby debut against Samoa, Davies knows better than most not to get ahead of himself.

"My main goal is to stay on the paddock this year," he said.

"It hasn't been a smooth last two years. I've had a lot of injuries.

"So staying fit, staying on the paddock and being consistent is definitely one of my goals," he said.

As the reigning premiers, the Reds will face added pressure this year on and off the field.

But after a low off-season player turnover and a strong pre-season, Davies said his team was set for the challenge of defending its title.

"It's certainly a different feeling being the champions," he said.

"It's going to be different playing this year.

"Everyone will be out to knock us off.

"We're trying to build something here with the team we've got.

"Hopefully we can go back-to-back."



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