BRETT Kimmorley predicted it.
In April last year the former Australian rugby league player said Orange product Jack Wighton would play for the Canberra Raiders in the “not too distant future”.
This year Wighton played nine NRL games for the Raiders but a ligament injury in his foot prevented him from pulling on the boots for most of the season.
However, he gave a glimpse of what he’s capable of scoring two tries in the junior Kangaroos’ 48-16 win over the junior Kiwis on Saturday night.
“I thought Jack had a good year,” Kimmorley said.
“He had the ligament injury which meant he didn’t play a lot. At the start of the year he handled the step up in class real well on the wing and in the centres. I know he’s certainly got great raps on him at the club.
“I guess next year he’ll be looking to be a regular in the first grade side. He’s certainly a great kid.”
The man known as ‘Noddy’ will be in Orange tomorrow to be a special guest at Orange CYMS’ presentation dinner.
Kimmorley played with CYMS captain-coach Mick Sullivan at Cronulla and the Bulldogs.
Sullivan might pick up a few new training techniques from his former teammate after Kimmorley enjoyed a successful season as part of the Bulldogs coaching staff.
This meant he worked with head coach Des Hasler.
“He is outstanding,” Kimmorley said of Hasler.
“He’s very thorough. I’ve learnt a lot.”
Obviously the season didn’t end the way he had hoped with the Bulldogs losing the NRL grand final to Melbourne, 14-4.
It was an interesting match for Kimmorley who won a premiership with Melbourne in 1999 but finished his playing career at the Bulldogs.
“Obviously Melbourne have a special emotion still because that was the first club I won a premiership with,” he explained.
“Still, I hoped they wouldn’t win another one.”
Despite the loss, the former Bulldogs halfback said he enjoyed his role in the grand final.
“I’m lucky to have tasted both sides of it. It was very enjoyable (being on the sideline),” he said.
“Being on the coaching staff we get to analyse what we should and shouldn’t do. You get a massive say in the result of the game even though you’re not on the field.”
Kimmorley is waiting to find out if his role will continue with the Bulldogs for the 2013 season and if it does, the club’s pre-season starts on November 9.
Right now he said he’s looking forward to the CYMS presentation.
It will be held tomorrow from 7pm at the Orange Ex-Services Club.
Tickets are $45 and are available from Kelly’s Rugby Hotel.