Lockyer showing no signs of slowing down in international arena

Brisbane and Australian captain Darren Lockyer believes that this years Four Nations tournament won’t be the last time he represents Australia.

Lockyer also firmly believes that his young Brisbane team can win another premiership and take the trophy back to Brisbane for their first premiership win since super-coach Wayne Bennett’s departure.

Lockyer has had a fantastic career for the Kangaroos, spanning 13 years resulting in 51 test matches.

Despite all this however, and despite persistent rumours that he was looking to retire from representative football, Lockyer believes that his body can cope.

While a ton of experienced players would rather retire from international football in order to prolong their respective club careers, Lockyer has said that whilst he is still physically capable of playing for Brisbane, QLD and Australia, he will continue to do so.

The idea of a fifth premiership is also driving Darren Lockyer to continue playing.

“I’ve got a job to do here now and I’ll evaluate things at the start of next year,” Lockyer said ahead of Sunday’s tournament opener against Papua New Guinea.

“At this stage I’m keen to play again next year but after that we’ll just have to wait and see.

“If the injury had have been from wear and tear or a soft tissue injury maybe (rep retirement would have been an option), but it was just one of those things I couldn’t really prevent.

“I found this year I was able to cope with the rep football as well as club. I think the Broncos in the next couple of years are a real chance of going close to a title so I really want to play my part and give that the best shot.”

A niggling rib injury has kept Lockyer from doing what he does best, and that is playing football, but Lockyer has declared that after a prolonged break, he is feeling refreshed.

“I always appreciate every game I play for Australia,” he said.

“Like anything, the day I do decide to hang the boots up, that’s when it’ll really sink in what these games mean. Right now, I’m just focusing on the job I’ve got to do, it’s an honour to play for Australia and you just want to do wellwhile you’re here.

“My ribs are fine. Mentally it’s been a good little rest. Physically I’ve been in pretty decent shape other than the ribs, but mentally it’s been good.

“I did a bit of wrestling with the boys, and it was only wrestling Cooper Cronk … so I think it’ll be a lot more physical on Sunday, these guys play pretty tough.”

The PNG side filled with mostly local talent are expected to be beaten convincingly, but Darren Lockyer says that his side may start the game a little off the pace.

Last year’s Four Nations opener was an indication of what happens when you don’t play footy for some time, with a 20-20 all draw coming against eventual winners, New Zealand.

“I predict it’ll be similar this time around,” he said.

“This year the draw for us is building up to the business end of the tournament. Last year we were a bit rusty and I think we’ll be a bit rusty again on Sunday. It’s pretty hard to nail it first go.”

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