Nick Frisby

Rugby World - - CONTENTS - Words Alan Dy­mock // Pic­tures Getty Images & SNS Group/ SRU

NLY ONCE does he need a ques­tion re­peated. But then Nick Frisby is clearly learn­ing new voices. “Get­ting the Glas­gow ac­cent has prob­a­bly been the hard­est part,” the Aussie scrum-half says mer­rily, just three weeks into his stay in Scot­land. “I am slowly find­ing it bet­ter, though. It’s not too bad. I’ll get it quickly – and my Aussie ac­cent is prob­a­bly just as hard for them to un­der­stand!”

One of only a few new re­cruits at Glas­gow, Frisby ar­rives to add

Oto the War­riors’ al­ready im­pres­sive stocks at nine. The five-times Wal­laby will vie with Scot­land’s Ali Price, the un­pre­dictable Niko Matawalu and last sea­son’s break­out star Ge­orge Horne. While those three are hun­gry, though, they may not have the same mo­ti­va­tion as Frisby.

In 2017 the scrum-half and a Queensland Reds team-mate chose to go out drink­ing af­ter a Su­per Rugby loss to the Hur­ri­canes. Af­ter fail­ing to show for a re­cov­ery ses­sion the next day, they were stood down by then coach Nick Stiles.

When no-non­sense Brad Thorn then came in as Reds boss, he told Frisby and Quade Cooper that they had no place in his plans and could play club rugby.

The half-back is philo­soph­i­cal as he re­flects on the cir­cum­stances that led to him ar­riv­ing in Scot­land.

“I’ve had that time at the Reds that was tough and for a while it was a pos­si­bil­ity that I might not play footy again,” Frisby re­veals.

“At the time it was hard, not play­ing footy for a team I’d spent so long with. But there was poor form from me on the field and that led to poor de­ci­sions off the field – I had that al­co­hol-re­lated thing – and I was told that I was free to look else­where.

“It hurt at the time, ob­vi­ously. It’s al­ways hard to be told that you’re not wanted. But as I look at it now, it was the best thing to hap­pen to me. I was due for a change – in my at­ti­tude, in my work, where I was. I was not go­ing all-in for my team and it was not fun… It was good to get my at­ti­tude changed.”

Some say it can be equal parts ground­ing and mo­ti­vat­ing to drop down a grade to play club rugby. But af­ter a lit­tle time with Bris­bane Premier side GPS – who were the ones to break the news of Frisby’s move to Glas­gow on so­cial me­dia – Frisby went to Bordeaux in the Top 14 for a short stint.

“Go­ing to France was re­ally good for­tune,” he con­tin­ues. “I loved France. It was a beau­ti­ful city, the footy was re­ally en­joy­able and I was en­thu­si­as­tic to take on that dom­i­nant role as a half-back, try­ing to get guys play­ing. In a dif­fer­ent lan­guage too, which was a good chal­lenge.”

When the move to Glas­gow was made pub­lic, Frisby said in a state­ment that he couldn’t wait to get “ripped in” to pre-sea­son. Now amongst it at his new home, he has been caught in the cy­cle of ham­mer­ing the work, then go­ing home to “get the toes up”.

That has meant he hasn’t seen much of the coun­try yet. He has made it to a few cafés and spied a bit of Glas­gow, but spare time and en­ergy are rarely at a pre­mium dur­ing the pre-sea­son months.

Frisby has en­joyed the sup­port of his new team-mates. He is ap­pre­cia­tive for any added help. Af­ter all, elite-level pre-sea­sons are tough enough with­out you learn­ing a new sys­tem, tak­ing in new sur­round­ings or even fig­ur­ing out your place amongst all the new faces – “I’m slowly but surely re­mem­ber­ing ev­ery­one’s names at the club,” he says.

He jokes about the fact that Aussies can get ev­ery­where, say­ing that “there are more peo­ple I know play­ing here (in the UK and France) than in Aus­tralia”. He al­ready knows Glas­gow’s Sam John­son from their time to­gether at the Reds, while he ac­tu­ally went to the same school as steady Ed­in­burgh and Scot­land lock Ben Too­lis.

What he still needs to get to grips with is the War­riors’ way of play­ing the game.

“The whole set-up here is one of the best I’ve seen in rugby,” Frisby ex­plains. “I’ve been re­ally im­pressed. I had spo­ken to Dave Ren­nie about the way they play and I know it will be a re­ally en­joy­able style. You only have to be here one day to see the dif­fer­ent di­men­sions.”

When Glas­gow un­veiled the sign­ing, Ren­nie him­self said of Frisby: “Nick has an out­stand­ing skill-set, he is quick and has a qual­ity pass and kick.

“He’s also in­cred­i­bly ver­sa­tile. While he’s pre­dom­i­nantly a nine, the Reds some­times played him at ten and as a younger player he played a lot at 15.”

Most ex­pect Frisby to be the go-to nine when oth­ers are on Test duty. But he will want to show his worth amongst the young and un­pre­dictable play­ers here.

“I guess ini­tially I want to find my feet,” he calmly sug­gests. “But I also like to think I can play out­side of the box too…”

Age 25( 29 Oct 1992) Born Bris­bane Club Glas­gow Po­si­tion Scrum- halfHeight 6ft Weight 13st 3lb Aus­tralia caps Five In­sta­gram@ nick­frisby

Spin doc­tor Frisby says Glas­gow’s set- up is “one of the best I’ve seen”

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