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St George Illawarra Dragons winger Brett Morris is excited about the fresh faces in training and admits the upcoming preseason trials will provide each an opportunity to flaunt their skills.

The Australia international has been rested for the Red-and-Whites first trial match against a combined Illawarra Cutters and Mudgee Dragons team at WIN Jubilee Oval, Kogarah on Friday.

The Kiama Knights junior is enthusiastic about the NRL Auckland Nines Tournament and hopes to be given the opportunity to represent the Red V when the team is named early next week.

“Every session at training is pretty tough, obviously you have some weeks that are tougher than others but I couldn’t just pick out one session that has been more difficult than any other,” said Morris.

“Being at the World Cup, I obviously came back a little later than most of the guys here so I’ve just been going about my own business and trying to get through preseason to be my best.

“My body is feeling pretty good; I had a great break and I got away from all things footy and enjoyed my time off, I was actually a little bit bored there toward the end of the break but it’s good to get back into training and I’m ready to play.

“I got married and went on my honeymoon; we had a big holiday and obviously you miss all the guys when training starts to get closer so it’s good to get back into it and see all the new faces.

“I have a week off this week, so I’m not playing on Friday but we find out next week who’s playing in the Nines.

“I’m definitely keen to play in the Nines, I‘ve been waiting my whole career for a concept like this, the less people on the field the better it is for little guys like me; I’m looking forward to it and hopefully I can get a run.

“A lot can be gained out of these games, obviously it’s going to be very fast football and highly entertaining; we’ll be able to see what we need to improve on and I think it’s a great concept and I think the players will love it.

“I’ve been there a long time now debuting in 2006 so it feels like a new club with all the fresh faces there and it’s pretty exciting going to training every day because we get to work on all new combinations.

“All the guys are pushing each other forward and I think we’re going to have a great year this year.

“Gareth Widdop is a wonderful player, we’ve seen what he did a the Storm and he’s played with some great players down there; but coming to the Dragons has give Gareth the opportunity to stand up and make a big name for himself.

“He’s a quality player and someone who we are really happy about having at the club; he’s been one of the standouts during preseason and it’s been good to have him on board.

“We are definitely working on combinations, anytime he wants to give me the ball I’m happy to take it; he’s fitting in nicely, training well, talking and doing everything that is expected of him, come trials I think he’ll go well.

“The last two seasons, by our standards, have been well below par; this is a proud club and we want to be there in September playing Finals footy.

“We are disappointed with the way we’ve played these past years and obviously the Coach and players are going to be under pressure.

“We’ve all got the job and responsibility to perform and this preseason has been as tough as any; we have our expectations set quite high and we’re looking forward to the start of the season.

“We don’t want to get ahead of ourselves but as a team we know where we want to go and where we want to be so it will be interesting come Round 1.”

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Acknowledgement of Country

St George Illawarra Dragons respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders peoples, where our games are played, our programs are conducted and in the communities we support.

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