Sport

Gillett stepped things up a notch this year: ex-Kangaroo

IN FORM: Matt Gillett is tackled by Thomas Leuluai, Isaac Luke and Tohu Harris during Australia's win over New Zealand at Perth on, Saturday.
IN FORM: Matt Gillett is tackled by Thomas Leuluai, Isaac Luke and Tohu Harris during Australia's win over New Zealand at Perth on, Saturday. RICHARD WAINWRIGHT

RUGBY LEAGUE: Ex-Australian and Brisbane linchpin Kerrod Walters believes fellow Sunshine Coaster Matt Gillett has "taken his game to another level” and he expects the back-rower to be a force in the game for years to come.

The 28-year-old is bound for the Four Nations in England this month - his first major international tour with the Kangaroos - after a career-best season in which he was adjudged most consistent player at the Broncos.

He was also a key player for Queensland in its State of Origin triumph over New South Wales and on Saturday was a strong performer for Australia in its win over New Zealand.

"Matt's taken his game to another level in the past 18 months. He's a very consistent performer who has got to the stage where he just plays each game at a really high level,” he said.

"Defensively, he's very good. His technique is really good. He misses very few tackles and he certainly gives them a bit of a whack when he hits them.

"And in attack, he's got that ability to run a good line and is a handful.”

Now a seasoned performer for the Broncos after seven years in the NRL, Gillett boasts 15 outings for the Maroons and three for the Kangaroos.

But there could be plenty more to come.

"He certainly warrants his place in the Origin and Australian teams... unless there is a massive drop in form or a major injury, I can see him being selected for the next three or four years,” Walters said.

"I think he's got to really focus now on looking after his body and making sure he can get through the seasons.

"I was amazed at Corey Parker and the amount of games he played. He was able to back up week-in week-out so that's what Matty needs to do, is take a leaf out of Corey's book and keep turning up each week and putting his body on the line.”

Topics:  australia rugby league brisbane broncos four nations kerrod walters matt gillett


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