Considering his size slotting back into the defensive line has been pretty easy for Orange product Jack Wighton, but it's been his kicking game that's been his major focus in returning to the Canberra Raiders' five-eighth role.
Wighton played the opening nine rounds of the 2014 NRL season in the No.6 jersey before remaking himself as a fullback, since then he's established himself as the Green Machine's No.1 during the past four seasons.
Having also previously played in the centres and has a heavy-handed approach to defending anyway, one of the major reasons for his move back to the halves is coach Ricky Stuart looking to shore up the side’s defensive line.
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The fact he's an imposing 189cm and 93 kilograms also helps, making him one of the biggest five-eighths in the NRL, and Wighton went as far as labelling the defensive side of the move “fun” so far.
The bigger focus is his boot.
"That's been one of my main focuses is my kick. If I can build a confident game around my kick then everything else will be fine off the back of that," he told The Canberra Times.
"Defence hasn't been too much of a problem. It's actually been quite fun being back in the line so looking forward to it."
Wighton said those 85 games in the No.1 jersey had helped develop him to the point where he was comfortable returning to the halves, a move so many fullbacks in the modern game tend to eventually make.
He felt the fullback role was like being a second five-eighth, but he hadn't been ready for the move there at the start of the 2014 season.
Now he's confident of making the switch, where he's expected to partner halfback Aidan Sezer. Sezer will assume the role of organiser, with Wighton to use his running game more.
"They chucked me there in the deep end a few years ago," he said.
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"I honestly don't think I was ready for it then, just young, hadn't played there for a few years, but I feel a lot more comfortable this time around.
"Making the transition from fullback up to five-eighth I think there's not much difference in [it] attack-wise you know.
"Fullback's a second five-eighth these days, it's just getting used to the defence and a little bit more organisation.
"Repetitive training takes the nerves away so that's what you've got to do. I'm really confident and looking forward to it."
Wighton was unsure who would replace him at fullback, but said he'd been impressed with new recruit Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad - who trained with the Raiders for the first time last Saturday.
Stuart's also been running the eye over Michael Oldfield and Bailey Simonsson back there.
"[Nicoll-Klokstad] came straight into an opposed team and he looked like he'd been here a couple of months," Wighton said.
"It was a very, very positive sign. He seems like a good kid, willing to learn and very positive.
"We've had young Bailey Simonsson training very well back there too through the pre-season, and also Michael Oldfield, so there's a lot of depth contesting for that No.1 spot at the moment.
"I'm pretty happy and comfortable where we're sitting."
Wighton was hoping to play one or two of the Raiders' upcoming trials, the first of which is against Parramatta on Friday night.
He wants the Raiders to hit the season running this year, having been slow out of the blocks the last few - losing the first four in 2018 and three of four the season before.
"I definitely want to get one or two trials in before we go, just get a little bit more rhythm working with the boys," Wighton said.
"But then I'm biting at the bit to get in and have a few games at the start of the year and hopefully we can kick start the season a lot better than we have the last few years and get a few on the board."
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