Goode eyes steady switch
England prospect in no rush to make switch to fly-half
Last Updated: 28/05/10 3:32pm
Goode: No hurry to make switch
Alex Goode says that he does not want to repeat the mistakes of other international prospects by switching to fly-half too early.
The 22-year-old has put in a string of impressive performances while playing at full-back for Guinness Premiership finalists Saracens this season.
But he is expected to step into the number 10 jersey next campaign and has also been selected at stand-off in England Saxons' squad for the Churchill Cup.
Even if Goode believes his long-term future may lie at fly-half, the exciting youngster believes that making a hasty switch from full-back could hinder his progression.
"I didn't think full-back would go quite as well as it has done. I've only been playing there for a year and half now," Goode said.
"The improvement I've seen in myself has been remarkable, something I never expected.
"Because of that I'm reluctant to move. But as long as the process is gradual I don't mind.
"I'm aware that so many 10s have risen to the top and fallen straight back down because they have moved too quickly - guys like Shane Geraghty, Danny Cipriani and even Ryan Lamb.
"They've all been there early doors, with people saying: 'Look at these precocious talents', but they haven't kicked on from there. Instead, they've plateaued.
"The guy who I look at is Toby Flood at Leicester. He took his time to get there and played at centre and full-back along the way.
"Now he's playing well and people are talking about him as the next England 10. I don't want to push for 10 too early."
Goode admits that he was uncertain about his future at Vicarage Road at the end of last season after a major squad overhaul, with a number of South African imports vying for playing time.
He added: "I was very nervous about the upheaval and anyone who says they weren't was lying. It was a strange time.
"You don't want to listen to the media but there were all these South African people coming in.
"You think will I be picked ahead of a South African or will that work against me?
"But as soon as (director of rugby) Brendan Venter came in he was honest and told the player straight away if they were part of his plans.
"Every year 12 or 13 players leave one or two clubs. It happens.
"All the new guys coming in were very hungry, not World Cup winners looking for a pay cheque."