AFTER almost conquering the world last year, former Scone junior Henry Robertson is spreading the rugby union gospel throughout the region.
The talented scrumhalf joined fellow NSW Waratahs team mate Alex Newsome in New England this week, and the pair proved to be extremely popular among the youngsters in attendance.
Enthusiasts from around the state had the chance to learn from the players, who have been in their shoes before, at a National Rugby Camp in Armidale.
Glen Innes' Newsome and Robertson took a break from their pre-season training to visit and mentor some of the sport's up-and-comers.
The ex-Scone Public School student, who originally took up league with the Thoroughbreds, was a member of the Wallabies 28-man squad, which contested the World Rugby U20 Championships in Argentina.
The national side surged through to the decider, but lost a thrilling 24-23 showdown to France.
This week's camp featured on-the-field training with the duo and a question and answer session, which gave the participants the chance to hear what it takes to come up through the country ranks and make it to the elite level.
Newsome has been in the same situation as the campers, having been part of the annual Armidale-based event when he was a junior player.
"I actually came to this rugby camp back in 2006 as a participant, so 14 years ago," he said.
"It is good to come back to any regional area, let alone my home town, or close enough.
"Henry, he is a young, up-and-coming halfback so it is good to have him come up with me.
"He's a Scone boy, so he is a country boy."
While the youngsters in camp came up with a few interesting questions to ask the pair.
"I always cop funny questions; 'Who is faster? Are we even friends?'" Newsome said.
But, he did have an important message he wanted to get across to any kids aspiring to make it to the top in the sport.
"The main message is to have fun but I say play as much sport as you can," he said.
"It is important to get involved in as many ball sports at this stage and enjoy themselves.
"It is not too serious here, it is all about promoting rugby and getting all girls and boys involved as well."
The Waratahs will be back in the region on March 21 for round eight of the Super Rugby competition.
They'll face the Bulls for the clash and Newsome hopes everyone gets behind it and there's plenty of familiar faces there cheer them on.
"It is probably the first and last time a Super Rugby match will ever be in Tamworth," he said.
"It's a pretty special event so I am hoping it is a sell out at Scully Park and I am certainly looking forward to that one.
"Everyone is going to be hitting me up for tickets so I will see how I go."