After incomes a Top 30 deal, rugby union convert Jeral Skelton has set his sights on an NRL debut with the Bulldogs.
Skelton performed junior rugby league however switched to rugby as a young person and represented Australia in Rugby Sevens.
The 23-year-old spent two years with the Melbourne Rebels earlier than making the code swap and taking over a train-and-trial alternative with the Bulldogs mid-2022.
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He performed six video games for the membership’s NSW Cup aspect, ending the season with three tries and a formidable 42 sort out breaks, whereas averaging 136 operating metres a sport.
The Bulldogs had been fast to lock him in on a two-year Top 30 deal and now an NRL debut is “definitely the goal” for Skelton.
“When the Bulldogs reached out, I also had the opportunity to go to Japan and play union, but I took the risk and signed the train-and-trial at the Bulldogs. It just felt like the right time for me,” he advised NRL.com.
“I told my dad that if I made the switch to league then I’ll give everything I have to make the squad.
“There was a lot of uncertainty around my future but as soon as I made the decision to stay, I knew it was right. I just wanted to back myself and give it my all.
“Now I get a chance to do a pre-season with the top 30, an NRL debut is next year is definitely the goal.”
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An NRL profession wasn’t essentially on Skelton’s radar, however accidents made him reassess his priorities.
“Throughout all my junior footy I played league for the Albany Creek crushers, but as soon as I went to a private school that’s when I switched to rugby union,” Skelton stated.
“My dream when I was playing rugby (union) was to play as many Super Rugby games as possible and hopefully play for Australia one day. That was my end goal.
“But after doing my ACL and a few other injuries when I was playing for the Melbourne Rebels, I think that matured me as a player and I started to think about my future more.
“I’ve represented Australia in Rugby Sevens and always thought I wanted to play for the Wallabies but after being handed an opportunity in rugby league I thought it was now or never.”
The Bulldogs recruit is hoping to lock himself within the backline of Ciraldo’s aspect — and believes he has the precise individuals round him to make that dream turn out to be a actuality.
“I would love to play centre and wing. Those two are the main positions that I’m aiming to play,” he stated.
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“I didn’t know league players as much but the players I look up to are more older players that have been around the club.
“Raymond Faitala-Mariner has been looking after me a lot and I’ve tried to learn as much as possible from him. Obviously, he plays in the forwards but he helps me around training if I ever need to get my head around something.
“Jayden Okunbor has also really looked after me. He took me under his wing as soon as I got here.
“I’m happy I made the switch to rugby league. I think I see myself playing league as long as possible.”