Klemmer eyes Kangaroos berth
Off the back of a powerful end to 2014, barnstorming Bulldogs front-rower David Klemmer has put his hand up for selection in Tim Sheens’ Kangaroos squad for the upcoming Four Nations tournament.
With the likes of James Tamou, Trent Merrin, Paul Gallen, Nate Myles, Dave Taylor and Matt Gillett ruled out of the season-ending tournament, 20-year-old Klemmer has come into calculations as a potential bolter.
Despite finishing the NRL season with a 24-point grand final loss to the Rabbitohs on Sunday, Klemmer was more than happy to throw his hat into the ring if selectors were to give him the green light.
"If I do get the chance I will be more than ready to take the opportunity with both hands but if not, I'm just happy to play first grade every week," Klemmer said in the moments following the conclusion of his first full season in the top grade.
"It is every kid's dream to play for his country. I don't know how the Test selectors pick it but if it does happen I'll take it with both hands.
"If I don't get the call up, I'll just concentrate on getting ready for the pre-season."
His rise in the NRL arena is no accident though considering the cattle he runs around with week-in, week-out.
With internationals James Graham, Sam Kasiano and Frank Pritchard by Klemmer's side out Belmore way, the young bull has plenty of experience to guide him towards superstardom.
Graham especially has been able to teach the All Saints Toongabbie junior plenty of things, ensuring Klemmer becomes a force to reckon with in future years.
"I used to run straight at blokes but he has taken me under his wing and showed me how to be a smarter front-rower," Klemmer said.
"Maybe I’ll now produce a little step before the line instead of getting upended.
"He also has helped me with my passing game, being the good ballplayer that he is, so I just love learning off him.
"I'm only a young bloke so leaning from someone like him is very good."
Funnily enough, if Klemmer does get selected in the Kangaroos squad, a potential showdown with his mentor awaits.
With Graham leading the charge for England and Great Britain teams since 2006, racking up 25 Test appearances, Klemmer will have to be on his game to stop his veteran counterpart.
Not that it fazes him, with Klemmer expecting to "lock horns" with Graham if they are to face off against one another in Melbourne come November 2nd.
"We're mates off the field," Klemmer reaffirmed. "But we'll go at it if we do take on each other."