Picking Roos over Kiwis an easy choice: Su'a
He was named Man of the Match for the Junior Kangaroos in the side's 34-20 win over the Junior Kiwis on Saturday afternoon, but back-rower Jaydn Su'a admits he could have been playing for the opposition instead.
The Brisbane Broncos edge forward ran for a game-high 219 metres from his 18 hit-ups and added 21 tackles in an outstanding 80-minute effort.
Born across the ditch, Su'a moved to Queensland at a young age and had no hesitation declaring his allegiance to the Aussies.
It's a decision the Logan Brothers junior doesn't regret and has been made even sweeter by his family's unreserved support.
"I've got ties to both Australia and New Zealand," the Kangaroos back-rower told NRL.com after the match.
"I was born in New Zealand but I moved over to Australia when I was two. I still feel a strong connection to New Zealand but I wanted to play for Australia. It was a tough choice but Australia picked me, they wanted me to do a job and I did it.
"My family are my biggest supporters. They were happy with my choice and they have supported me 100 per cent of the way."
The 19-year-old was the standout in a star-studded side but credited the halves pairing of Nathan Cleary and Lachlan Croker for steering the Junior Roos to victory; their kicking proving one of the biggest factors on the day.
Su'a played on the same edge as Croker and said his combination on the left with the Raiders playmaker played a big part in the 14-point win.
"In my opinion those two guys have the best kicking games in the comp. They were calm and composed and that really helped us in the vital moments," the Broncos Holden Cup star said.
"I think Nathan is on the verge of playing NRL and Lachlan has already been there. They really directed us well out there and today and we played off the back of it.
"He (Croker) put me in a few holes today and I was just lucky to be in the right spot at the right time for some of those runs."
Saturday's numbers should come as no surprise given his start to the Holden Cup season. Su'a has made 1,291 metres through nine rounds at an average of 144 per game and has been one of the Broncos' best players week in week out.
Su'a admitted he wasn't aware of the impressive string of numbers that had people calling for him to make a possible NRL debut when the likes of Sam Thaiday, Corey Parker and Matt Gillett are away on State of Origin duty.
"I didn't know that, I'm pretty stoked with that effort. The coach (Craig Hodges) just wants me to run hard and tackle hard and I think I've been doing that," he continued.
"Obviously I'd love to [play first grade] but we've got a few boys down there who are ready and I believe they are in front of me so I've just got to be patient, take my time and play the best footy in 20s that I can.
"If my time comes then I'll take it, but I'm more than happy to play NYC for now."
One of those teammates is Tevita Pangai Junior whose impressive Holden Cup form saw him named Junior Kangaroos captain for the first time.
It was Pangai's third Test match for the Junior Roos and he almost celebrated his farewell from the under-20s arena with a try in the dying stages, only for the bunker to correctly rule a knock on in the lead-up.
"He was filthy. But that's how it went. We still won," Pangai's Broncos teammate said.
"He's a big, strong boy so he's going always going to be tough to handle. You saw him today make one of those big breaks and we love to just play off the back of that."