Blogs & Opinion

Luke Dorn:

Most Popular Posts:

Opinion Archive:

Luke who's talking!

Harlequins hit the heights as Australian settles in at full-back

Luke Dorn Posted 11th March 2011 view comments

It's been a busy winter for me, both on and off the field. For starters I got married back home in Australia and although it was pretty cold (even by British standards), the big day was fantastic.

There was time for a honeymoon to the Great Barrier Reef before returning to England in mid-November for pre-season training, meaning I 'enjoyed' the snow that blanketed the country during the winter.

Dorn: filling right at home at full-back

Dorn: filling right at home at full-back

As an Aussie I enjoy the snow; it's still a novelty to me for the first day or so. After that it does lose its appeal quickly, though it's still tough to believe that a 'bit' of white stuff on the grounf can bring an entire country to a standstill!

Thankfully the day job didn't get affected too badly, as Quins put contingency plans in place to hold indoor sessions during bad weather.

Few outside of the club may have known about Rob before he was appointed, but he's been brilliant with the players from day one

Quotes of the week

This winter was our first pre-season under new head coach Rob Powell, who has taken over as head coach following the departure of Brian McDermott to Leeds.

Few outside of the club may have known about Rob before he was appointed, but he's been brilliant with the players from day one. He was clear on what we had to do from the outset, narrowing our focus a little bit when in the past we've been a bit loose, perhaps concentrating on too many things.

Mac has been around the game for a long time and has his own theories on how the game should be played, and obbviously a new man has his own ideas.

Rob has changed a few areas of our game. For starters, he's given people more responsibility than in the past and made us more specific, particularly in defence.

It's fair to say Quins have never in my time at the club been known as a strong team defensively, but it's something we've worked on during the winter months.

Before the start of the season we were tipped as one of the sides to struggle in Super League, and you couldn't blame anyone for thinking that way. Last year we didn't perform well and then there wasn't a massive recruitment drive during the off-season.

However, the players we've bought in from Australia have added a lot to the squad; they've come in and immediately blended in with the rest, both on and off the pitch.

Healthy situation

Quins have also used the loan system, bolstering our ranks even further. The biggest difference from this time last year, though, is that we have a fully fit squad at the start of a campaign. It shouldn't come as a surprise to see a team going well when it has all of their players available for selection.

We started the campaign confident that we could do something this year and already we have given an indication of what we are capable of.

Against Leeds at Headingley we scored plenty of points and then even though we lost against Huddersfield last time out in front of the Sky Sports cameras, we were still in it at the death. In previous years I think we would have rolled over and got a few more points put on us.

Back at this stage in 2010 we already had three players ruled out for at least three months (including myself) and throughout the season we had five or six out for an extended period of time.

Now, in contrast, there is competition for places in the first team. It also means the things we've worked on during the off-season can be born out on the field of play.

As for me, full-back appears now to be my permanent home. Last year I enjoyed playing in the position but I was somewhat forced there due to an injury to Ben Jones-Bishop (who is now showing everyone how good he is back at Leeds).

Having now become fully accustomed in the role now, I'm starting to wish I'd played there more in my career!

I enjoyed this off-season more than any other before because it involved learning about a new position, about what to do in situations, about a full-back's duties in defence, about returning the ball from deep. Then there's also developing knowledge on where and when to chime into the attacking line.

So far, life at full-back has been excellent, as too has Quins' start to the season - long may the good times continue in 2011!

Comments (1)

  • Page 1 of 1
  • 1

Giovanni O'brien says...

Luke is a brilliant part of the team and is an 'ornery' Londoner!

Posted 18:26 11th March 2011

  • Page 1 of 1
  • 1

Add Comment*

Send us your views

Are you a Sky Sports subscriber?

*All fields required, your email address will be kept private

back to top

Other Rugby League Experts:

Latest Posts in Rugby League:

Barrie vs Terry

Barrie v Terry

Barrie McDermott and Terry O'Connor go head-to-head with their Super League predictions......

Phil Clarke

Clarke: Six into one

Phil Clarke looks at the contenders for the League Leader's Shield as we head into the sharp end of the season....

Phil Clarke

Rules of the gain?

Phil Clarke is worried some of the basic laws are being ignored just to make rugby league faster....

Latest News RSS feeds

Saints v Wolves: Teams

St Helens can clinch their first League Leaders’ Shield since 2008 with success over Warrington Wolves at Langtree Park.

Moon banned for two games

Leeds Rhinos centre Joel Moon will miss the remainder of the regular season after being handed a two-game ban.

Wane: O’Loughlin to replace Kev

Wigan Warriors coach Shaun Wane believes appointing Sean O'Loughlin as the next England captain is "a no-brainer".

Morley to combine roles

Adrian Morley will play on for Salford in 2015 but has handed the captaincy to team-mate Harrison Hansen.

RFL look into Hardaker claim

Leeds and England full-back Zak Hardaker is to be investigated once more by the RFL for using homophobic language.


Good Week/Bad Week: We take a look at the winners and losers from the last seven days

Good Week/Bad Week: We take a look at the winners and losers from the last seven days

Another seven days of sport have offered up a gamut of emotions. As the dust settles, Sky Sports sifts through it all to bring you the heroes and villains of the past week.

Super League: Leeds Rhinos Challenge Cup win caps a great era

Super League: Leeds Rhinos Challenge Cup win caps a great era

In years to come when they look back on the great teams in the history of rugby league they will talk of the Wigan dominance of the late eighties to the mid-nineties, the 1982 and 1986 Kangaroo tourists and others such as Huddersfield’s ‘Team of all talents’ around 100 years ago.