A stroke of luck came with Robbie Coleman’s timely move to playing two wide of the ruck.
A schoolboy star at flyhalf, dominant performances at that level earned Coleman a spot in the Australian Schoolboys team and had him touted for higher honours.
The immediate future didn’t quite pan out as smoothly as Coleman would have hoped as he missed out on the Australian Under 20’s trials.
Things soon turned around for the Queanbeyan product as he capitalised on a chance thrust upon him by the Brumbies Academy.
“Representing Australia through school got me my academy chance at the Brumbies,” Coleman said.
“I really realised then that to make it to the next level you need a bit of luck,” said the former Australian Sevens representative.
“I was playing a lot of 10, and 12 got injured before a Brumbies Academy game. I’d just turned 18 and they threw me straight into 12. I was lucky enough that day [the Australian 20s coach] was here in Canberra and I managed to score 5 tries.
After that game I got call from the Under 20s coach and he said ‘I’m going to name the Aussie 20s side, and you are a shadow player’.”
The St Edmunds student was right on the verge of cracking the side and playing alongside future Wallabies in Nic White, Matt Toomua, and Kurtley Beale. Just a touch of luck away.
It came when incumbent 20s player James O’Connor was fast-tracked into the Wallabies line-up, seeing Coleman flown into Australian under 20s camp on the back of his successful switch to inside centre.
Success soon followed as he starred on the world sevens rugby stage for Australia before forcing his way into the Brumbies’ Super Rugby XV.
Coleman says none of it would be possible without his family and Brumbies Academy coach Darren Coleman.
“There are times in Academy when you feel like you’re not going anywhere, but good family support kept me working hard, and a coach that believed in me,” Coleman said.
So what’s next for “The Prince of Queanbeyan”?
“I’m not too sure. All I’m focused on is playing my best footy, and that will take care of itself,” Coleman said.
With a little luck, it could be that green and gold jersey.
To hear Robbie Coleman discuss his life changing moment, press play below.