James Tedesco has set his sights on becoming the Kangaroos long-term fullback.
The Roosters No.1 has worked hard on becoming an organisational leader behind the defensive line, in the mould of Anthony Minichiello and Billy Slater.
Slater replaced Minichiello as the long-term Kangaroos fullback and now Tedesco is hoping to be the long-term replacement for the retired Melbourne Storm great.
“I think everyone has the goal of playing for Australia but I knew with Slater retiring that if I had a good year at the Roosters that an opportunity would come up and I was really happy with how I played this year,” Tedesco told NRL.com
“He held the jersey for a number of years and dominated the game but I am 25 now and I think for myself there is a chance to hold the No.1 jersey for a while.
“It is not going to come easy but I think I can get that started by training well this week and having a good game on Saturday.”
Tedesco worked closely with Roosters coach Trent Robinson on his defence since crossing from Wests Tigers at the start of the season.
“I worked hard with Robbo [Robinson] and the time and effort we put into defence has been the biggest change for me.
“The first week we had three wrestle sessions and I was thinking this was not that much fun but everyone said at the start it would pay off.”
The 25-year-old admitted he is not the “complete” fullback but declared he and the Roosters will be aiming to improve their attack during this off-season.
“Robbo was speaking after the season and [he said] the defence he wanted to get out of me has hit 100 per cent where he wanted to get to [but] attack didn’t hit 100 per cent. That’s the exciting bit heading into next year, I still have a bit left to improve on in attack.
“I feel that too. I feel like there is more for me to exploit. I got to where I wanted to be by the end of the year but there are still areas I could improve and get involved more. We have a similar team next year but it won’t be a case of being comfortable, I will be straight into it.”