‘So much growth in him’: Wallaby greats in Tahs vs Reds tug-of-war for Carter Gordon


His team is not yet dead and buried but where Carter Gordon ends up next season is a hot topic of debate.

The Melbourne Rebels and Wallabies No.10 is on the look out for a new team with the demise of the Rebels, who face huge odds against the Hurricanes in the quarterfinals this weekend.

Michael Hooper and Tim Horan predictably want to see Gordon sign for the states closest to their hearts – while Horan belies Rugby Australia must take a leading role in strategically placing Rebels players into their best fit at other franchises.

“I’d love to see Carter Gordon come to NSW,” Hooper said on Stan Sport’s Between Two Posts.

“I think he would be a really good person to have there. I think he’s got so much growth in him. But he’s had some really beautiful touches already in his career. He’s got to get his goal kicking a bit up to standard.”

His arrival would put pressure on Tane Edmed, named this week in Joe Schmidt’s train-on squad for the July Tests following the Waratahs exit from Super Rugby.

“Carter Gordon wants to go back to Queensland,” Horan said on Rugby Heaven.

“You talk to him after the Rugby World Cup, that’s where he’s from.

“He grew up there, he’s very close to Tate McDermott but there’s a lot of 10s there in Queensland at the moment. He can play 12 as well.”

Watch every match of Super Rugby Pacific ad-free, live & on demand on the Home of Rugby, Stan Sport

Former Wallaby Cameron Shepherd also backed a move for Gordon to the Tahs.

“He’s a great player and he’s probably one of the most experienced 10s we’ve got at the moment. He’s got huge potential,” Shepherd said.

“We’ve certainly seen flashes of it in the Melbourne Rebels jersey and in a Wallaby jersey. However, I just think Australian rugby needs to be a little bit careful about manipulating these movements too much.

“You’ve got to remember this is a job as well as a passion for these guys. And you’re also talking about their homes, for individuals and maybe homes for their families. So it’s a difficult situation, that a lot of these Rebels players are going to face and RA in particular.”

Carter Gordon of the Rebels kicks the ball during the round four Super Rugby Pacific match between Melbourne Rebels and Queensland Reds at AAMI Park, on March 15, 2024, in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Asanka Ratnayake/Getty Images)

RA have spoken to players about their preferences for 2025 and are not able to demand they go somewhere they don’t wish to – although Horan believes RA should have that sway.

“I actually reckon that Rugby Australia needs to be able to say to these 17 contracted players, we need you to go to NSW because of these reasons.

“They’re short in props, Taniela (Tupou), we need you there. Lukhan Salakaia-Loto, we need you at the Western Force unless there’s a circumstance where they say ‘my family’s in Queensland, I’ve got two kids, I need them looked after.’

“But otherwise I think rugby has to tell these 17 players, with context of where they’d like to go, but also talking to those franchises.

“This is where we need you for the benefit of Australian rugby and the Wallabies. Rugby Australia’s got to put their foot down that ‘we need you at this club.’ The fans want four really strong teams now. Everyone’s disappointed that the Melbourne Rebels are not going to be there anymore.

“We want four strong teams, so divvy up those players and make the other four teams really strong so that we beat New Zealand teams week in, week out.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.