Hayne open to positional switch

Jarryd Hayne

You will have the fans who will harp on that the method has been tried, tested, and failed, but for Jarryd Hayne himself, with the arrival of new coach Ricky Stuart for the 2013 season – he has no problems in playing fullback or five-eighth.

For Hayne, who is out for the season after undergoing knee surgery, he says that he will play where Stuart believes he fits into the side best.

“What position I play, for me, I am comfortable in both of them”, said Hayne.

“That is obviously up to Rick, whatever he sees me as. My main concern is the preseason, and getting the body right. That is something we will look at in the future. From my part, I am just looking at getting my body right, because I know I am going to have to work hard, if I want to play five-eighth.

“I need to get everything right and train hard.”

Although there is uncertainty as to what position Hayne will play, the star fullback is confident that Ricky Stuart is the man to get the Eels out of their recent slump.

“He is one of those coaches that comes in with enthusiasm and passion,” Hayne said.

“He is the type of bloke you can speak to for five minutes, and he will have you standing on your toes. That is the way he speaks; he speaks with fire. He has got that little man syndrome, where he is really aggressive and upfront.”

“If he needs something, he will say it. But it is all in the best interests of the playing group and the players. That is why so many players respect him, because of the way he holds himself and the way he addresses teams. He does it through love, to get the best out of the boys. Ricky’s biggest strength is his passion, and the way he brings a team together”.

With captain Nathan Hindmarsh retiring at season’s end, Hayne’s name has been thrown into the ring to lead the side – but Hayne is nonplussed if he gets the captain’s gig or not.

“I am sure that there is probably four or five of us in contention,” Hayne said.

“From my part, it is probably the last thing I am worried about; I am more worried about the pre-season. Definitely it would be something huge to be captain. I have never captained since I was in the Under 11’s. I was always behind Kris Keating in the junior ranks; he was a great leader, and is doing great things at Canterbury. I was always the young kid coming through.”

“Running out of the line would be a bit funny. It is always good to be chilled and relaxed at the back. A few of the boys will put their hands up, but that is up to Ricky. I have just got to train hard, and put everything in”.

Hayne, who is off-contract at the end of the year, and the centre of persistent rumours that he is headed out – has fans wondering if the signing of Stuart, will help the club retain Hayne.

“I have never said I want to be anywhere else. I have never looked anywhere else, and I cannot see why I should do that now,” Hayne said.

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