Rogers feeling better after neck surgery - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Rogers feeling better after neck surgery

By Daniel Pace 31/01/2008 09:18:37 PM Comments (0)

Gold Coast Titans star Mat Rogers will celebrate his 32nd birthday on Friday but the dual international says he feels like a 25-year-old.

Rogers can't wait for the 2008 NRL season to start following off-season neck surgery that has rejuvenated his injury-prone body.

"I'm rocking up to training feeling 25 again," said Rogers, who has made himself available to play for Queensland in this year's State of Origin series.

"I'm feeling fantastic. I can't wait for every day of training and I haven't felt like this for a long time.

"I'm just really excited about the year ahead."

Rogers is likely to start in the Titans' season-opener against North Queensland in mid-March at five-eighth, the position where he trained outside playmaker Scott Prince.

Ashley Harrison, Josh Lewis and Preston Campbell are other options for the No.6 jersey but Rogers is expected to get first crack at the key role.

"I love playing outside Princey," the former Wallaby said.

"He's a good organiser and certainly takes a lot of heat off the bloke outside him.

"I'm just excited about the challenge. It's a whole new start again.

"This time last year I wouldn't have been ready to do it.

"I was learning about the game again (after quitting rugby union) and learning how to play it again but now I feel comfortable."

Rogers, who also wants the full-time goalkicking duties, said he enjoyed five-eighth because he received the ball more.

"Some might think I'm a hog but I like running it," he said.

"Tackling isn't the fun part of the game, running the ball is the fun part of the game.

"Whether it's rugby league or rugby union, nothing really changes. You get the ball and try to beat the guy in front of you.

"Hopefully I can do the job justice."

Rogers said a plea from his 11-year-old son Jack convinced him to put his hand up for Origin duty.

"My son begged me to play if they picked me," said Rogers, who last played Origin in 2000.

"He can't remember me playing Origin.

"If they do need me, I'll put my hand up."

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