2015 has began positively for Dyldam Parramatta Eels Chris Sandow. The halfback, who has claimed two Trainer of the Week awards during a gruelling pre-season, was honoured with his selection in the upcoming NRL All Stars clash.
Sandow was selected earlier this week by a public vote of more than 15,000 fans to represent the Indigenous All Stars at Gold Coast’s Cbus Super Stadium in February.
“I’m excited! This is the second time I’ve been picked and this will be as special as the first one,” Sandow said.
“It is good representing my people and heritage and especially coming from a small community is a big achievement, so hopefully all my family and friends get out there to watch.”
Sandow is proud of his selection and is looking forward to the opportunity to represent his community, yet despite his excitement, the halfback is humbled knows his individual role in the game is much bigger.
“I grew up watching Indigenous players and wanting to be like those players. I am one of those guys today and I know kids are looking up to me,” Sandow said.
“I love putting a smile on kids faces and that’s why I try my best to go out and win these games” he added.
The selection into the Indigenous All Stars side has also continued to lift the confidence of the Eels playmaker. After taking out the Eels Players’ Player in 2014 to claim the Ken Thornett Medal, Sandow is confident of continuing and improving on his form from last season.
“I feel a lot different to the last few years I have been here. I am now one of the older guys going around here at the club so I know I had to pull my finger out and work really hard,” Sandow said.
“We have a lot of young guys here who look up to me so I have taken that on board and I am willing to do that for the boys.”
“I know what I have to do. I have to do my best and do my part” he added.
And Sandow knows that the rest of the Blue and Gold squad are behind him, ready to lift their game to the next level aswell.
“I don’t think the Eels Members and fans can expect anything different. I am always trying to win games and I hope they see that,” Sandow said.
“My teammates know what sort of player I am like so they try hep me out as much as they can too. I always try do my part and that little bit extra, so if it does come off, the boys love it but they back me up when it doesn’t.”
The halfback, along with the rest of the Eels squad, are determined to make a mark in 2015.
“I hate losing, I am a sore loser. I hate losing with a passion so I always try my best to try go out there and win,” Sandow said.
“We have a good mix in the squad this year so it’s exciting. It will be hard coming up against us this year.”
“All the new boys have fit in really well. Reece Robinson has been a standout and Brad Takairangi is a big boy! You have to give those boys early ball when you can and we know we have to play to our strengths and that’s what we will be doing this year.”