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Highlander Hobbs even surprised himself

Michael Hobbs says that his highly impressive Highlanders performance in the opening clash against the Crusaders even suprised him.

Hobbs has been out of rugby for the last 10 months as a result of a stress fracture in his back and admitted the possibility he could be rugby-rusty was firmly in his mind heading into his first Super 14 game with the Highlanders on Saturday.

However the 22-year-old former Auckland Blues player starred for the Highlanders and now looks set to take over the Highlanders No10 jersey in round two against the Blues.

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Hobbs was named on the bench for the match against the Crusaders as Matt Berquist was preferred to start at first five-eighth.

Just minutes before half time though Hobbs came on to the field and made an immediate impact by scoring two tries and converting both.

The son of the chairman of the New Zealand Rugby Union took control of the game and ran hard whenever he got a chance to test the opposition’s defence.

“It was a better start than I could have asked for. I’m not use to scoring tries. It caught me a bit unaware,” Hobbs joked when speaking with The Southland Times.

Hobbs added that he was pleased to get the Highlanders’ first game under his belt and wasn’t getting too far ahead of himself, suggesting he wasn’t happy with some of the options he took.

“There were things I would have done differently, when I look back at it,” he said.

Hobbs is able to play at 10 or 12 and said that he is comfortable to line up in either position but admits that he feels more at home dictating terms in the No10 jersey.

Hobbs is looking forward to facing his former team mates at the Blues and said, “The banter has already started.”

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