Bernard Foley

Bernard FoleyA member of the wider Qantas Wallabies training group through last year’s June Tests, BERNARD FOLEY is one of the up-and-coming backs in the Australian game.

The utility back continued to push for selection in the first half of 2013, stringing together and impressive run of form as the NSW Waratahs first-string flyhalf, featuring in all 16 of their regular season games and leading the Australian conference in metres gained with 2,493.

The June break of Super Rugby saw Foley return to the Australian Sevens lineup for the first time since 2011, as he was selected as one of 12 to represent Australia at Rugby World Cup Sevens 2013 in Moscow, Russia.

While in camp with the Australian Sevens, he was released temporarily by Australian Rugby Union to allow him to join the Waratahs in their clash against the British & Irish Lions.

The tricky 23-year-old first emerged on the Super Rugby stage when debuting during the NSW Waratahs’ semi-final qualifier against the Blues in Auckland at the tail end of the 2011 competition, a match that was the last in the celebrated career of the former ‘Tahs skipper Phil Waugh.

He cemented a place in the backline last term, featuring predominantly from fullback, but also from flyhalf where he has been more permanently based this season.

Australian Sevens captain on the 2011-12 IRB World circuit, Foley made the mid-year Qantas Wallabies training group and came close to a Test debut when Berrick Barnes threatened to miss the Melbourne Test against Wales through the calling of fatherhood.

Had Barnes not made it on the flight back from Sydney after the birth of his first son Archie – and it was a close run thing with the flyhalf only arriving at the team hotel as the pre-game team meeting began – Foley would have been injected into the match night squad. He had been placed on stand-by when Barnes headed back to Sydney to witness the birth the previous afternoon, with the eventual Wallabies savior in that game Mike Harris, having been slated to move from the bench to the starting line-up.

While the call didn’t come then, it may come soon, as Foley offers plenty of utility value, and has proved in Super Rugby that he has the ability to take his game to the next level. A constant attacking threat, Foley is a solid defender and has proved a safe pair of hands under the high ball.

Foley developed his craft rapidly after first gaining selection for the Australian Sevens side in 2009. His first start came at the season-opening tournament at Dubai and he went on to feature in all but the Hong Kong tournament on the 2009-10 world circuit, before winning selection for Australia’s silver-medal-winning Commonwealth Games team at the 2010 Games in New Delhi, India. That side included a number of players who either were, or have since gone on to become, established Wallabies including Lachie Turner and Nick Cummins.

Foley became a mainstay of the Australian Sevens side during his second year on the world circuit in 2010-11, with that status formally recognized when coach Michael O’Connor elevated him to the role as captain. Foley scored 26 tries on the 2010-11 circuit, which ranked eighth among all try-scorers for that term.

FAST FACT: The Sevens development pathway has proved critical in the emergence of Bernard Foley. After making the Australian team for the first time at the end of 2009, Foley started the 2010 season playing third grade for Sydney University, but ended it with a silver medal, having featured at the Commonwealth Games tournament in India.

Height: 182cm
Weight: 90kg
Date Of Birth:  08/09/1989
Place of Birth:

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