Mortimer name returns to top grade - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Mortimer name returns to top grade

By Steve Jancetic 20/05/2009 06:37:08 PM Comments (0)

The Mortimer name is just one Daniel Anderson call away from returning to top grade rugby league with young gun Daniel poised to make his NRL debut with Parramatta on Friday night.

More than 20 years after father Peter and uncles Steve and Chris Mortimer formed the nucleus of a dominant Bulldogs era, Daniel Mortimer said he was ready to make the step up after being named on an extended bench by Eels coach Anderson for the meeting with South Sydney at ANZ Stadium.

"There's a chance there (I'll play), I'm not sure what the chance is but I'm just happy to be in the mix," Mortimer said.

"I wasn't sure when I'd get my chance and a good opportunity's come in the next couple of weeks and hopefully I can take it."

Mortimer, 20, gets his crack at the NRL following news halfback Kris Keating (broken jaw) and five-eighth Feleti Mateo (torn bicep) would be sidelined for three months.

The injury crisis - on the back of Brett Finch's early season departure - has prompted Anderson to name winger Joel Reddy in the No.6 jumper, but it is likely Mortimer will spend a fair bit of time at pivot against the Rabbitohs.

Mortimer was thrown up as a possible halfback solution when Finch was granted a release last month but said the extra few weeks had made his elevation easier to handle.

"It's not as if I was thrown in a few weeks ago when Jeff Robson got thrown in - he probably found it a bit harder, so I'm probably a bit lucky there," Mortimer said.

"This is a good opportunity and hopefully playing with Jeff in the weeks to come will be a good experience and we're both a bit new and hopefully we can get through it together."

As for playing for one of the Bulldogs most despised enemies, Mortimer said:

"A lot of people aren't happy with me making the move to Parramatta, but I'm pretty happy here and looking forward to whatever lies ahead.

"They're always giving me advice my dad and my uncles - the best thing they say is to play you're own game, that's why you're there."

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