Joining the Australian Kangaroos camp today, Rabbitohs recruit Dane Gagai is grateful to be fulfilling a dream to represent his country. Even more exciting is the fact he’ll be debuting in one of the biggest tournaments in Rugby League: the Rugby League World Cup
Gagai finds himself lost for words to have received a phone call from Kangaroos Coach Mal Meninga calling him up to the squad. The Wally Lewis Medal winner is quick to credit his family and friends for their support in getting him there.
“When I got the phone call, words can’t really explain the feelings I had,” said Gagai.
“To be able to chuck on the green and gold jersey has been a dream come true.
“It was a lot of hard work but a lot of credit goes to all the support I’ve had throughout my career since being a young fella. Obviously, first starting from my parents and the support from other family members, my cousin Josh Hoffman and a lot of good mates I’ve made along the way.”
One of those good mates is Rabbitohs Captain Greg Inglis who Gagai has spent time with in the Indigenous All Star and Queensland Origin camps.
“It’s always a pleasure to play alongside him (Inglis) – not so much against him – I guess I won’t have to worry about that next year. I’ll be able to chuck on the same jersey as him which will be a great privilege and I’m definitely looking forward to that opportunity,” said Gagai.
For now, Gagai is concentrating solely on his Kangaroos debut at the upcoming Rugby League World Cup. The skillful winger is also keen to play alongside and learn from some of the best players in Rugby League.
“I get to play alongside some players that I normally wouldn’t get to. I got to do that in the Prime Minister’s XIII and now I get to do it at the highest level. I’m just going to enjoy every moment,” said Gagai.
“I’ve been gifted a great opportunity to represent my country and I’m going to do that to the best of my ability. Everything I’ll be putting my focus into will be this jersey and before that was the Prime Minister’s XIII jersey.
“I’ll get to enjoy that with family, friends and a lot of good mates.”