Bulldogs move would be 'great': Mortimer - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Bulldogs move would be 'great': Mortimer

By Steve Jancetic 23/07/2009 06:25:00 PM Comments (0)

Parramatta have a fight on their hands trying to hold on to gun rookie Daniel Mortimer, with the Eels playmaker admitting it would be great to carry on the family tradition and pull on the Bulldogs jumper.

Just days out from his first NRL game against the club at which his father Peter and uncles Steve and Chris created a dynasty in the 1980s, Mortimer did little to dismiss the possibility of one day emulating their deeds in the blue and white.

"It would be great to see a Mortimer back running around with the Dogs, just growing up I always idolised players from the Bulldogs and I used to just dream of pulling on that blue and white jersey," Mortimer said.

"It'd be great to be back there but I'll take it as it comes.

"Growing up I never thought I'd be playing against the Doggies - I thought if I did end up making a career it would be with the Doggies.

"It's a weird place to be in but I've been at Parramatta for two years now and I've grown to love the club."

Weird indeed, considering for much of his childhood Parramatta and the Bulldogs were arch-rivals - the two clubs sharing seven premierships between them in the 1980s.

The 19-year-old rejected advances from the Bulldogs earlier this year to sign a new deal with the Eels through to the end of next season, but he admitted it could be harder to say no should the blue and whites come knocking again.

"My manager has always said the club that you're with you give them the first and last chance to sign you," Mortimer said.

"I did give Parramatta the first chance (this year) and what they came up with was a one-year extension and I thought that was good for me.

"I'm very happy at the club for at least one more year and I'll see what happens, but I'll definitely heavily weigh up any Bulldogs options the year after."

Eels chief executive Paul Osborne said the Eels were keen to hold onto their new half, while Bulldogs chief executive Todd Greenberg said Mortimer was definitely a player of interest for his club.

Veteran Bulldogs playmaker Brett Kimmorley is off contract at the end of next season, but it is believed the club would still go after Mortimer even if Kimmorley decided to play on.

"There's no doubt that Daniel Mortimer's been spoken about at length here, both through his obvious ability this year and also through the heritage that the surname brings inside this club," Greenberg said.

"The apple doesn't fall far from the tree and knowing Daniel Mortimer and the whole Mortimer family like we do, it's little surprise to us that he's a quality player as well as a quality young man."

The fact Mortimer can speak so openly about his future typifies the confidence with which the former Australian schoolboy carries himself.

But it also belies the nerves he battles before every game, nerves he says will be there by the bucketload at ANZ Stadium on Saturday night,

"I'll probably be under the microscope a bit more this week, a lot of Doggies fan will probably be criticising me," he said.

"It is a little bit more pressure I think.

"I do enjoy a bit of pressure - I always get nervous just before the game when (Eels coach) Daniel Anderson starts firing out a few motivational lines."

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