Roberts could wing it for Blues
Brisbane Broncos flyer James Roberts says he will happily play on the wing if it means he will be selected in Laurie Daley's NSW Origin side for Game One.
Daley will name his side on Monday and Roberts hopes his versatility will earn him a Blues debut in front of a near sold out ANZ Stadium.
Roberts plays centre for the Broncos, but the Kempsey product made his NRL debut at fullback for the South Sydney Rabbitohs in 2011 and was also named on the wing in the NYC Team of the Year – capping off a stellar season.
The 23-year-old can even play off the bench, making his debut for the Penrith Panthers in 2013 coming on as an impact player.
Roberts says he would start in any position if it resulted in him getting to play State of Origin.
"I'd play anywhere if it meant getting selected in a Blues jersey," Roberts said.
"I played wing when I was at Souths when I first started out. It's been a while but it would be good.
"In saying that, I'm just focusing on the Broncos at the moment, but if the opportunity of Origin came my way I'd definitely take it.
"I haven't really had any correspondence with Laurie because I am just focusing on my club football at the moment."
It would be a tale of redemption if Roberts was to get a call up to represent his state, with the City Origin representative having a troubled past off the field.
Now at his fourth NRL club, Roberts has cemented himself as one of Brisbane's most potent attacking weapons, with his unbelievable speed a feature in almost every Broncos match.
It looks as if Roberts is a decent chance of being selected for NSW after he was picked in the Blues emerging squad at the start of year.
This Friday's match against the North Queensland Cowboys looms as an early audition, with the Brisbane centre set to face off against several QLD representatives.
Roberts says he won't let the occasion get to him and that he is firmly focused on shutting down direct opponent Kane Linnett.
"I handle my opposite number differently each week," he said.
"We do our video sessions and decide on what tactic will work best against the player standing opposite me.
"Kane Linnett is a really good defender and I'm sure he'll be looking to get one up on me come Friday."