Dumped by Cricket Australia from the national squad and its central contract,Andrew Symonds swapped the green and gold jersey of Australia for the green and red colours of Brisbane-based rugby side Wynnum-Manly in an exhibition match.
Symonds,whose CA contract has been ripped up for breaking team rules prior to the Twenty20 World Cup in England,made a surprise appearance at Kougari Oval,near Brisbane,against a Men Of League All Stars team. “I couldn’t sleep last night,” said Symonds,who gave a crowd of several hundred fans some glimpses of his potential. Playing wing for the first half before moving closer to the action,Symonds was playfully jeered by the crowd in the grandstand bar when he dropped the first pass to come his way but he proceeded to play well.
In the dying minutes he found space up the middle of the ruck to scoot away and could have scored himself but generously unloaded to teammate David Green who touched down under the posts.
Symonds once deceived the defence by twice dummying and he took the ball up with admirable commitment to the point where occasionally he drew three men in the tackle. Former St George hooker Trevor Bailey said he liked Symonds’ style. “He has got a bit of pace and strength – if he had played league he would have played wing or centre and being the athlete he might have done well,” Bailey was quoted as saying by ‘Courier Mail’.