Genia key to taming Lions

Tue, 04 Jun 2013 13:54
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Former Wallaby scrumhalf and captain Nick Farr-Jones believes that the contest between the No.9's could be the difference during this upcoming British and Irish Lions series.

Former Wallaby scrumhalf and captain Nick Farr-Jones believes that the contest between the No.9's could be the difference during this upcoming British and Irish Lions series.

The World Cup winning scrumhalf is of the opinion that Will Genia and Mike Phillips are the best scrumhalves in the world at the moment and whichever one can dominate the Test series will lead his side to victory.

Farr-Jones told lionsrugby.com: "Genia I rate as the best, it's important that he be consistently good.

"But he's up against a very physical, tough, big scrumhalf [Mike Phillips], who likes to niggle as well. It's going to be fascinating," Farr-Jones said.

Genia has been consistantly one of the best scrumhalves in the world in recent years and if he is on form during the series the Wallabies have a great chance to repeat their success from 2001.

"The good ball we get, Will's got to be able to use that well and his judgement's going to be really critical. He's playing with confidence, I think he'll want to dictate the series.

"I think Will will know, or at least be left in no doubt by [coach] Robbie Deans, that he needs to have an outstanding series if we are to win. You need your best players playing at their best capacity," the former captain added.

Farr-Jones also mentioned the importance for a scrumhalf to have a flyhalf outside him that he can trust and understand.

"I was lucky enough to play my first four tests with Mark Ella and the rest of my career with Michael Lynagh, it was critical to have someone you trusted, that you knew you had a great working relationship with.

"It gives you confidence and particularly as a scrumhalf, one thing that you need is lateral vision and when you have confidence, you have lateral vision in spades," he mentioned.

Genia has made it fairly well-known that he would love to see his Reds team-mate and flyhalf Quade Cooper outside him in the Wallabies No.10 jersey and Farr-Jones believes that Robbie Deans could very well make space for the controversial star in the final Australian squad.

"Knowing that the guy outside can do the job is critical. I have no doubt from a distance that Robbie Deans would listen to Will Genia [and] I'm sure Quade's still in the picture."

The Lions head into their second game of their tour - after they demolished the Barbarians 59-8 in Hong Kong - against the Western Force in Perth. Having a number of games leading up to the first Test will give the edge - according to Farr-Jones.

"I think we've got a very good chance but if I was going to put my house on it three weeks out, I'd go with the British Lions because of the continuity they get in the lead-up," he added cautiously.

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