Monday 25 September 2017 / 02:15 PM

Q & A With Rebels-Bound Mike Harris

Peter Fegan: It’s no secret you’ll be moving on from the Reds and signing a two- year deal with the Rebels at the end of the year. How hard was it to make that decision?

Mike Harris: Yeah it’s never easy. I’ve spent the last four years here at the Reds. It’s been such a great experience for me here in Brisbane and I’ve got some really good mates here as well, but that’s football; in your career you have to make some big decisions and I feel this will benefit my career.

PF: How excited are you about the move? Definitely a weather change.

MH: Yeah it won’t be as warm that’s for sure, but I’m really excited about the move. Like I said, it will be sad to leave Queensland but it’s an exciting new chapter in my life, so I’m very much looking forward to that.  

PF: You debuted for the Wallabies in 2011. What was it like to hear your name read out?

MH: Wow, it was something special. I’d only been in Australia from New Zealand for two years so it was surreal, but I was so honoured. It’s something you dream of as a kid. I worked very hard so it was also very rewarding.

PF: In footy there is always fierce competition between Australia and New Zealand. Being from New Zealand, was it hard for you to don the Wallabies jersey.

MH: That’s a tough one. It was definitely different. Growing up I supported the All Blacks obviously so it was never going to be an easy thing, but I have a lot of family in Australia which made things easier. I’m still very honoured to be a Wallaby and always will be.

PF: You broke John Eales’ record for the most consecutive goals in a super rugby season (24). Is goal kicking a passion of yours or just something you’re really good at?

MH: It’s something I’ve done since I was a kid; I love it. In rugby everything you do is with the team so it’s nice to have that thing where it’s just you and the ball. It’s kind of like an art form in a way. I love just going for a kick.

PF: Full back, inside centre and fly half – these are some of the positions we have seen you play. What position do you enjoy playing the most?

MH: Inside centre! I love getting put through a gap by the fly half, absolutely love it. I’d like to say 15 as well, but I have a fair bit of competition.

PF: Speaking of fly halves, Quade Cooper is gone for the rest of the season, how hard will it be for the Reds without him?

MH: It’s never easy when you lose a player like Quade, he’s so good, but we have a lot of depth at the Reds and some good young guys coming through. Ben Lucas steps into the role so well, he’s such a high quality player so I’m confident we will be fine.

PF: The goal against Wales in Melbourne – talk us through the moment you kicked us to victory after the full time siren?

MH: Ahh, what a great feeling. I’d only been on for about eight minutes so I was only just breaking a sweat, and then all of a sudden there I was about to take a shot at goal to win the game. As a kid I dreamt of this moment – to kick the winning goal at the highest level, it’s what drove me to get where I am today. It was so surreal. I was so focused that after I slotted it I grabbed the kicking tee and threw it towards the ball boy and started to run back into position, then I realised it was full time!

PF: And finally, you spend a lot of time on the road in super rugby. Who’s the biggest pest to travel with at the Reds and why?

MH: haha, I have to be careful here! Biggest pest … from all roommate accounts I’d have to say Beau Robinson, but I won’t go on!

 

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