Moltzen hopes Potter can unlock his potential

IAN MCCULLOUGH
Last updated 17:36 05/02/2013
Tim Moltzen
Getty Images
TIM MOLTZEN: "I've worked really hard this season fixing up a few things at fullback as that's ideally where I want to play."

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Tim Moltzen believes new Wests Tigers coach Mick Potter is the man to unlock his full potential as a NRL fullback this season.

Potter made more than 200 first grade appearances for Canterbury, St George and the Western Reds as a fullback in a career that saw him crowned Dally M Medallist on two occasions.

Veteran coach Brian Smith once said Potter had taught him all about fullback play when he coached him at the Dragons and Moltzen is now benefiting from that experience.

The 24-year-old's versatility has seen him play at centre, five-eighth and halfback since his debut in 2008 but it's the No 1 jersey he's targeting in 2013.

"I've worked really hard this season fixing up a few things at fullback as that's ideally where I want to play," Moltzen told AAP on Tuesday.

"Mick put it in my hands and asked me where I saw my best position and I've said fullback is where I feel best suited.

"He's brought in plenty of things that will help my game and pointed out things I need to work on in positional play and where to be at certain times, it's been really good.

"It's up to me now to be consistent and show him what I can do."

Moltzen was touted as a future representative player when he burst onto the scene in 2008, but a serious knee injury sustained in round five in 2010 kept him out for the season.

A solid 2011 campaign led to Dragons announcing they'd secured his services for the 2012 season, only for Moltzen to back out of the deal and remain with the Tigers.

The situation created a bitter row between the two joint-venture clubs at boardroom level and Moltzen admits the furore affected his form.

This was demonstrated in the round three clash between the sides at Kogarah, won 36-12, by the Dragons with the home crowd letting him know what they thought of his decision in no uncertain terms.

"It's something I've moved on from and don't want to dwell on it," he said.

"But mentally I am in a lot better shape than I was last year and have put all those things behind me.

"I am just focused on impressing a new coach and having a better year."

Moltzen will have to stave off competition for the custodian role from youngster James Tedesco.

Tedesco was thrown in for his debut in round one against Cronulla last year, but his season lasted just 30 minutes when he ruptured his cruciate ligament when running back the ball.

The 20-year-old will play his first game since the injury in Friday's trial game against Penrith in Bathurst and admits he excited and slightly nervous.

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"It's exciting to be playing, but there is a bit of nerves there as well," Tedesco admitted.

"I had a bit of setback and needed another arthroscopy on the knee so I didn't get back to pre-season until December.

"Obviously I want to play first grade, but at the moment I'll be happy to get some games in NSW Cup and then build from there." 

- AAP

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