Australia international Hugh McMeniman makes welcome return to Super Rugby
Western Force forward Hugh McMeniman is relishing his return to Super Rugby after spending three years in Japan.
By Tony Curtis - Follow me on Twitter @SkysportsTC
Last Updated: 12/02/13 4:54pm
The 29-year-old, who can cover positions across the second and back rows, made 29 appearances for the Reds before moving to Kubota Spears.
And although McMeniman enjoyed his overseas adventure, the Australia international can't wait to make his mark on Super Rugby again.
"It has been really good to be back in a competitive environment," McMeniman told Sky Sports.
"It is a different style of play to Japan. In Japan it is much faster with a 'helter-skelter' approach, with lots of quick taps, while at the ruck the ball really spits out.
"In Super Rugby the contact is a lot harder and it's more physical. To be honest being over in Japan probably saved my body a bit."
McMeniman joins a Force side that finished bottom of the Australian Conference and were only spared the embarrassment of finishing last overall by the Lions.
However, with a new coach in Michael Foley and a number of new players - with McMeniman, Chris Alcock, Ed Subbs, Sias Ebersohn and Alby Mathewson among the off-season arrivals - hopes are high that the Perth franchise can mount a serious challenge.
"I am feeling confident at the Force, it is a really good team with a lot of young players coming through," said McMeniman.
"If we can play the way we do on the training paddock then finishing top of the conference is a possibility but that is a long way down the road.
"However if we can get off to a good start - we play the Rebels, the Kings and then the Bulls - then we have a good chance."