Gallen leaves rep door ajar for Four Nations
Paul Gallen says even if 2016 ends up being the final year of his playing career he wouldn't rule out his final game being a Test for Australia in the end of year Four Nations in England.
Gallen has already announced 2016 will be his final State of Origin series but the Sharks skipper has yet to decide if he'll look to go around for one final year with Cronulla in 2017 in what will be the club's 50th season.
Gallen also revealed after Australia's 16-0 win over the Kiwis that he had been personally tasked by new Kangaroos coach and long-time Origin tormentor Mal Meninga with driving the new levels of passion in the national jersey.
"Mal spoke at the start of the week about getting some pride and passion back in the jumper and he came to me in one of the sessions and said 'that's you, you've worked hard to get here," Gallen said.
It's a fair rap given speculation ahead of the team being named that long-time Maroons coach would be reluctant to pick the Blues hardman.
It seems any mooted differences between the pair were purely hypothetical with Gallen claiming the man of the match award in Meninga's first game as coach following a pep talk from Origin's most successful coach ever.
"I just had to go out there and do my job tonight. A lot of it came about because Semi [Radradra] got 10 minutes in the bin!" Gallen laughed after the game.
"When you're a middle you sort of go back for the first couple of tackles and the outside backs are usually taking them out of there but because he wasn't there we sort of got stuck. I seemed to be 'Johnny on the spot' so to speak and had to get a lot of those carries done."
Of his representative future, Gallen said no decision had yet been made but added he wanted to see Australia get back to the top of the Test rankings.
"I want to get Australia back to number one, the first step was winning tonight and we did that so now I'll go back to club level and enjoy that and if I'm still playing good at the end of the year and I get picked to tour then I'll probably tour," he said.
"But I've got to sort my future out first and get through the next four to six weeks and see if I'm playing next year."
Gal noted Meninga's final game of league was in green and gold rather than the lime green of his club Canberra and didn't rule out repeating the feat himself.
"To go out on my terms would be nice but I really don't know. I'll get through the next six weeks and talk to the club and see what they're thinking and just go from there but I've really got no plans at the moment, I'm just enjoying my footy."