Rona: ‘I’m familiar with the role’

Wallabies newbie Curtis Rona says he is comfortable on the wing despite having played only 80 minutes there in his time at the Force.

Rona was a surprise inclusion at number 11 in the Wallabies' starting XV to face the All Blacks in their Rugby Championship opener on Saturday.

This, despite him having been a regular for the Force but at outside centre. However, Wallabies coach Michael Cheika believes Rona is a 'high-quality player' and should cope just fine.

When asked if the Wallabies had any plans should the All Blacks decide to target to the debutant, Cheika told Stuff:

"[We have] not got plans to combat it," Cheika said.

"Curtis has been picked because he's a high-quality player who in the camp has shown a lot of enthusiasm and aggression. He's just been hungry. I'm sure he'll handle it, no problem.

"He's run there pretty much since we came into camp and he's looked really comfortable. I've really been impressed with what he's done.

"When he came into camp I didn't think he'd be playing in that spot. There's no way we would be picking him if we weren't backing him 100 per cent to do really well."

Meanwhile, Rona is confident in his ability and is happy that his hard work in training has not gone unnoticed.

"I guess they [the All Blacks camp] can say whatever they want, but I know what I'm capable of doing," Rona said.

"I didn't see it coming, but I've been training really hard these past few weeks."

Rona added: "I've been spending a lot of time on the wing in previous years, so I'm familiar with that role and knowing where to be, it's like second nature."