BLACKWATER man mountain Dave Taylor will get the chance to show his full array of skills in tomorrow night's Harvey Norman Rugby League All Stars match.
The hulking South Sydney Rabbitohs back-rower, renowned in local circles for his chip and chase ability, will be rewarded if he can successfully utilise the skill in the match.
The NRL is trialling during tomorrow's All Stars clash at Skilled Park a rule that rewards the attacking team with another set of six tackles if they kick and regain the ball in their half.
Inside the NRL All Stars camp there has been little talk about the concept, and despite possessing chip-kicking skills, Taylor said he would likely leave it the likes of All-Star halfback Benji Marshall.
“I'll be staying away from that – unless it's late in the game and then I might think about it,” Taylor said.
“One or two of the boys were mucking around at training, but I'm not sure whether it's worth taking the risk inside your own half.
“You don't really want to risk it and turn the ball over inside your own half.”
Despite the introduction of the new rule to entice attacking play, Taylor is preparing for a tight contest, especially considering last year's match which the Indigenous All Stars won 16-12.
“I think we are going to see a bit of a different game this year (to last year),” Taylor said.
“I don't think there will be as much flair this year. Both sides will want to control the ball and it'll be more about finding the advantage line.”
After missing the inaugural All Star match through injury, the 22-year-old is grateful for the opportunity to feature in the match that kick-starts the 2011 season.
“I'm really happy everyone voted for me again this year, it was disappointing to miss out last year,” he said.
Based in Surfers Paradise, the NRL All Stars preparation has been smooth sailing, apart from seven-time premiership winning coach Wayne Bennett, Taylor's former mentor at the Brisbane Broncos.
“He hasn't changed one bit,” Taylor joked.
“He's always getting stuck into me.
“Really, it's been a ball actually. It's been the most relaxed camp I've ever been a part of. Everything's run so smoothly.”
Back under Bennett's rule, Taylor will most likely turn out for the NRL All Stars in the front row with the likes of specialist second-rowers Feleti Mateo and Ash Harrison on the interchange bench likely to fill their customary roles.
In a feast of footy. Following tomorrow's night NRL All Stars match, Taylor returns to Sydney to watch the Rabbitohs take on Bennett's St George-Illawarra Dragons in the Charity Shield match at ANZ Stadium Sunday night.
NRL All Stars v Indigenous All Stars, Skilled Park, tomorrow 7.10pm (Qld Time).
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