By Nathan Davis
St George Illawarra Dragons prop George Rose will do whatever it takes for an opportunity to wear the famous Red V jersey.
The four-time Indigenous All-Star, who recently signed a one-year contract with the Club, has revealed that he in fact was a Dragons fan as a child and is now eager to fulfil a childhood dream.
Rose believes he can bring experience into the side’s relatively young forward pack and is already impressed with the skills his new junior teammates have already displayed.
“I actually supported this Club growing up from a childhood age right up until the 1999 Grand Final,” said Rose.
“The grand final broke my heart, and as I came down to Sydney a year later I couldn’t support a Club that I’d be playing against.
“It is definitely exciting not only for me, but for my family and also for everyone back home in Walgett as well.
“That’s where I played for my first ever game of footy and it was in a Dragons jersey.
“I know I have to try and get a few extra training shirts to send back home.
“The boys all look really fit, really athletic and have the skills to go with it.
“There are a few talented young forwards here who are very fit and very tough and I’m looking forward to having a run with them.
“Hopefully they’ll make a few good tackles for me and I’ll try to make a few good runs for them.
“Jack de Belin in particular, has impressed me already.
“He has just come of off-season and he’s absolutely shredded.
“It’s ridiculous; I don’t think there’s an ounce of fat on him.”
The Bathurst Penguins junior is also excited about the future of the Club as a whole and cites the attitude held by the staff and players as another driving force behind his decision.
“I wasn’t sure if I would be playing this season or not,” said Rose.
“But when they called be down to see the facilities and have a yarn to the coaching staff, it really sparked an interest in me.
“They were making a lot of positive changes.
“The new training facilities were impressive, and I liked the way they were approaching the season.
“Just speaking to Paul McGregor was very comforting.
“I like his attitude and how he speaks to the playing group. It was an easy decision to make.
“We have a good group of players and an excellent coaching staff.”
After a short stint with the Melbourne Storm, Rose is happy to back in Sydney and dedicated to find form for the Red-and-Whites.
“My goals are definitely to get back into a first grade rhythm,” said Rose.
“This year was a disappointing season for me on the field and I feel I underperformed.
“Coming into 2015 I definitely want to be playing like I used to and have a really strong season.
“Also being a part of the squad and win some games.
“I love winning games, and that’s my main goal.
“McGregor and I spoke about what we want to achieve when I first came down to the Club.
“They said they were looking for size and I know I have plenty of it, so that makes it easier for me.
“The day I ended up coming down to meet the guys I knew straight away that this was going to be a good place for me.
“This is where I want to be.”