Sergis and Robinson 'heading' for strong Jillaroos careers
Jillaroos debutantes Jess Sergis and Julia Robinson had a ferocious head clash that went viral on social media in the NRLW but are now putting their heads together to try and topple the Kiwi Ferns and forge a long-term career in the green and gold.
The duo were stars of the NRLW season with 21-year-old Sergis a powerhouse for the Dragons in the centres and rugby league novice Robinson, just 20, in rampaging form on the left wing for the premiership-winning Broncos.
Robinson, a netballer who first played rugby league in June, wants to make the most of her opportunity in Auckland on Saturday and make a long-term mark for the Jillaroos alongside Sergis.
"That would be the dream," Robinson said.
"We have a few debutantes in the team so it would be awesome to be able to be like those [long-term] players.
"Jess is still so young, and I have still hopefully got a few years in me so it would be good to be able to play with her the next few years."
When the heads of Robinson and Sergis collided in the opening round of the NRLW it created an iconic moment of the competition. Robinson, with a giant egg on her forehead, played on.
Sergis, who had no thought for self-preservation when making the tackle, wanted to continue but HIA protocols prevented her from doing so. Both women showcased their courage.
"That's what footy is. You have to play tough," Robinson said.
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"Just seeing it all over social media ... honestly, after the game I felt terrible, but it did go viral.
"That was the first time [playing against Sergis] and she is an amazing player. Just watching her through the whole NRLW comp she played really well and I am excited to see what she can do for the team."
Sergis can laugh about the collision now and is just happy to have Robinson in the green and gold with her.
"It was a big head knock," she said.
"I am stoked to have her in my team. She is a strong girl and a great individual player.
"It knocked me straight on my chin. I can tick that off my bucket list now. I have never had that happen to me before."
Sergis can also tick off her Jillaroos debut, an opportunity that has come quicker than she expected.
"It's a dream come true, I can't wait," she said.
"It was a bit of a rocky road this year with my career. I have had a few injuries but it has panned out better than I had hoped.
"I honestly don't know what to expect. It is my first Test match, I am just excited to get amongst the girls."
Robinson, a private in the Army, described wearing the green and gold as "the greatest honour".
"I'm in the Defence Force and I serve my country, so to be able to play for my country is a dream come true," she said.