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    Rookie Brumbies hooker heads to Bloem

    2016-03-22 19:33

    Cape Town - Brumbies hooker Robbie Abel may fulfil a childhood dream of making his Super Rugby debut when the men from Canberra tackle the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein on Saturday.

    Abel has flown to South Africa to link with the rest of the Brumbies squad following the one-week suspension of hooker Josh Mann-Rea, who received a red card for punching Stormers prop Oli Kebble at Newlands last weekend.

    Mann-Rea has been suspended from all forms of the game for one week, up to and including Sunday, March 27.

    With Mann-Rea suspended, Abel will train with the Brumbies this week ahead of the match against the Cheetahs.

    Abel returned to the Australian Capital Territories in late 2015 to link up with the Brumbies following two years as a member of the Western Force Extended Playing Squad (EPS).

    He said he is ready to take the next step in his career.

    “I feel like I’ve been ready for a while now, I’ve taken every step and gained a lot of confidence with this squad,” Abel was quoted as saying by the Brumbies’ official website.

    “Especially in this environment because the Brumbies environment is a pretty special thing so I’m really hoping I can get a few games this year and kick on in the years to come.”

    The 26-year old is a former Brumbies Academy player and was a standout junior in the ACT, playing for renowned rugby nursery St Edmunds College and forcing his way into the Australian Schoolboys side in 2008. He represented the UC Vikings in the 2015 National Rugby Championship, scoring two tries.

    Abel did play for the Brumbies in a trial match in Wagga Wagga in February.

    Abel could become Brumby No 183 this weekend, following fellow rookie Michael Wells who became Brumby No 182 in the 31-11 loss to the Stormers in Cape Town last Saturday.

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