'KB's shown class & resilience' - White hails Force's Wallabies call-ups

Fri, Jun 21, 2024, 7:53 AM
by Ben Somerford
Western Force scrum-half Nic White spoke following his selection, alongside four other Force players, in the Wallabies squad.

Western Force vice-captain Nic White is ecstatic to be part of Joe Schmidt’s maiden Wallabies squad, plus that enthusiasm flowed on for his selected Club teammates.

Scrum-half White was joined by Force quartet Kurtley Beale, Ben Donaldson, Hamish Stewart and Jeremy Williams in the 38-member Australia squad for Tests against Wales and Georgia next month.

White said the five call-ups were “unreal”, while on a personal level he was delighted to get another opportunity in the green and gold.

“You never take them for granted, this one more than ever,” said White, who was named alongside scrum-halves Tate McDermott and Jake Gordon.

“New coach, certainly getting a little bit longer in the tooth, to hear your name called out it’s a great feeling. To be in a squad to represent your country is why we play the game.

“There’s a lot of hard work still to be done but got my foot in the foot and excited to get into camp.”

The group will assemble in Brisbane on Sunday ahead of the first Test in Sydney on Saturday 6 July against Wales.

White is no stranger to the international scene with 63 international caps to his name, but for Stewart and Williams it’s their maiden call-ups.

“Jeremy, our fearless leader. He’s had an incredible season, and when he plays we’re a very different side,” White said.

“His physicality, his athleticism, you see him belt blokes and then you see him in space out on the wings. He’s just an exciting player. You forget how young he is. He’ll get a taste of what it’s like and certainly will go to another level as well.

“For Hamish, it’s just a reward for some seriously consistent performances this year. He’s a 100-capper now in Super Rugby. He’ll go in there pretty seamlessly. I think Hamish will take it in his stride. He’s certainly well and truly ready.

“It’s reward for someone who was so consistent this year. He plays above his weight, and he’ll continue to do that.”

White has plenty of international experience alongside 95-cap utility back Kurtley Beale, who joined the Force midway through the 2024 Super Rugby season.

“He’s shown his class and his resilience,” White said about Beale. “He’s come back and it was like he’d spent no time away. He slipped straight back in.

“Everyone here at the Force knew how valuable he was when he came in, with his voice, with his experience, with his experience. You can’t coach experience, so to have a guy of that experience around a few of these younger boys, it’s helping them a lot.

White was also excited about the prospect of potentially linking up with club-mate Ben Donaldson as the Wallabies’ half-backs.

“He came into some crazy good form this year,” White said. “Just great to see that get rewarded.

“It’ll be good to link up with my mate Dono and would love to continue that into the gold jersey.  First and foremost we’ll get in there and continue to work hard.

“He was good this year and it’s good to see him rewarded. Hopefully he kicks on. It’s exciting, it feels just like the start for the boys over here.”

Wallabies 2024 Home Tests

July Tests

Wallabies v Wales, 5:45pm AWST, Saturday July 6 at Allianz Stadium, Sydney

Wallabies v Wales, 5:45pm AWST, Saturday July 13 at AAMI Park, Melbourne

Wallabies v Georgia, 1:45pm AWST, Saturday July 20 at Allianz Stadium, Sydney

The Rugby Championship/Bledisloe Cup

Wallabies v South Africa, 12:30pm AWST, Saturday August 10 at Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane

Wallabies v South Africa, 5:45pm AWST, Saturday August 17 at Optus Stadium, Perth

Wallabies v New Zealand, 1:45pm AWST, Saturday September 21 at Accor Stadium, Sydney

Tickets to the Wallabies 2024 Home Tests are available to purchase here.

Get tickets to the Rugby Championship Long Lunch to be held on Friday 16 August prior to the Wallabies-Springboks Test in Perth, with Wallabies coach Joe Schmidt and RA CEO Phil Waugh among the guest speakers. More info & tickets here.