SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JULY 09: Moses Mbye of the Bulldogs celebrates scoring the winning try during the round 18 NRL match between the Canterbury Bulldogs and the Newcastle Knights at Belmore Sports Ground on July 9, 2017 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

Relishing his future in the fullback position, Moses Mbye has welcomed the challenge ahead under new coach Dean Pay.

After two inconsistent seasons at halfback, Mbye believes a change was inevitable.

Incumbent fullback Will Hopoate will gladly shift to centre, his first-choice position, to accommodate Mbye out the back, and to replace departing Brenko Lee.

“It’s a big move,” Mbye told NRL.com

“I’ve done a few training sessions at the back so far. Under the high ball will be one aspect to the challenge but it’s only a small one.

“It will be more the positional stuff and learning the game from there. We’ll go through pre-season trials in February and get a good gauge of how I’m going and what we’re going to do.”

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Mbye is not the first half to fullback transition at the Bulldogs with Ben Barba wearing the No.1 in 2011 and remarkably winning the prestigious Dally M Award a year later.

Mbye has been disappointed with his performance. However, after conversations with Pay, he’s comfortable with a positional switch.

“I hadn’t met Dean prior to his appointment in September,” Mbye said.

“There have been a few question marks alongside my name for a couple of years with what position suits me and my playing style.

“The role I was playing as a halfback is the pinnacle of domestic rugby league and you’ve got to wear the pressure with it. You put yourself under pressure to perform and be successful.

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“He’s now got a new job for me and has let me know what he wants me to do. I’ve just got to keep learning and apply myself the best I can.”

Mbye claims that the arrival of Pay has settled the playing squad, describing his teammates as ‘relaxed’.

“He knows what it’s about,” Mbye said.

“He’s grown up playing for the Bulldogs and is bringing that to the culture now. It’s a clean slate, he doesn’t owe a player anything. It’s all cut-throat and we’re all trying to get a position.

“It’s certainly a happy camp, it makes it enjoyable to turn up in the morning.”

12 COMMENTS

  1. I think he’s in for a great season

    1. Mbye
    2. Morris
    3. Morris
    4. Hopoate
    5. Montoya
    6. Foran
    7. Cogger
    8. Woods
    9. Lichaa
    10. Klemmer (VC)
    11. Elliott
    12. Jackson (C)
    13. Tolman

    14. Brown
    15. Fualalo
    16. Priest
    17. Faitala-Mariner

  2. Brilliant news! This should be our 2018 side:
    1) Mbye
    2) B Moz
    3) J Moz
    4) Hopoate
    5) Montoya
    6) Cleeland
    7) Foran
    8) Woods
    9) Lichaa
    10) Klemmer
    11) Jackson (c)
    12) Elliott (gk)
    13) Faitala-Mariner

    14) Tolman
    15) Martin/Fualalo
    16) Tualau
    17) To’Omaga

    • Sorry CBB4eva, I read this after posting below. OK, so the Dogs now have Mbye at FB but Lichaa at hooker is still the proverbial spanner in the works IMO. I don’t see Foran as a HB, he is more of a running/defensive 5/8 I think. I thought Josh Cleeland could cover HB as well? Well that only leaves Matt Frawely. It’s worrying that the Bulldogs own website list Foran, Cleeland and Frawley as 5/8’s and the only player listed to play HB is now playing FB. Don’t worry though, the Dogs got it right moving Mbye to FB, just like the Dragons could learn from the WC and move Widdop to FB (his natural position). I do rate Matt Dufty though, like Jerome Hughes, two exciting young talents waiting to cement a first grade spot.

  3. I have been calling for this change following the Sharks vs Storm 2016 GF. The Bulldogs will be better for it but they need to find a player to do the job at HB. Not sure if that is going to be Frawley or Cleeland. Any thoughts Dogs fans?

  4. might just work

    1. foran
    2. foran
    3. foran
    4. foran
    5. foran
    6. Foran
    7. foran
    8. foran
    9. foran
    10. foran (VC)
    11. foran
    12. foran (C)
    13. foran

    14. foran
    15. foran
    16. foran
    17. hasler

    • hahaha. The best post on ZT ever. But I’d go further than what SSTID_1970 says. There are 4 blindingly obvious errors. 1, Hasler should have been HB; 2, Hasler should have been (C); 3, Hasler should have been (VC); 4, you didn’t pick Hasler often enough.

      • Given Foran’s number of appearances for his last two clubs perhaps Hasler might have been the better option. Too bad the Dogs let him escape.

  5. Will be interesting to see who Pay entrusts will the 6 or 7 jersey alongside Foran. Cleeland by all accounts is a good talent, and hopefully they continue allowing Liccha scope to play. Am looking forward to Pay’s influence on the squad and the so called rebirth of the dogs of war. Been a while since the competition had a mongrel defence that is whack compared to wrestlers.

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