Dyldam Parramatta Eels five-eighth Corey Norman has been named in the official 2015 Auckland Nines Team of the Tournament yesterday, after his strong performances throughout the tournament.
“It's good to be named in the Team of the Tournament,” said Norman, who was surprised by his selection.
“There was a lot of talent out there on show and I went out there to have a bit of fun so I am happy to be named in the side,” he added.
“We showed on the field we have been working hard in the pre-season and it’s just good to play footy with the boys and have a bit of fun.”
Team of the Tournament:
Corey Norman (Eels)
Adam Reynolds (Rabbitohs)
Isaac Luke (Rabbitohs)
George Burgess (Rabbitohs)
Michael Morgan (Cowboys)
Solomone Kata (Warriors)
Chris Heighington (Sharks)
Wade Graham (Sharks)
Blake Ayshford (Sharks)
While Norman felt privileged to be named in the Team of the Tournament side, he wasn't forgetting the Blue and Gold's semi-final defeat by the eventual 2015 Auckland Nines champions, the South Sydney Rabbitohs.
“It was very disappointing," Norman said.
"We didn’t get off to the best start and everything went their way."
“There are definitely plenty of positives to take away. One thing was some of our scrambling defence, except for that last game, but if our ‘D’ is going to be good with just the nine on the field it will only be better when we are thirteen."
“We performed well and are a step further than we were last year so that’s a positive too,” Norman added.
Norman scored three tries from the Eels' five games, played a hand in numerous team tries and combined well with fellow half Chris Sandow, but he was quick to downplay his individual success.
“We just came over here to have fun and when every body is having fun, that’s when Parramatta plays its best football. I think the fans saw that over the last couple of days and we just have to keep moving forward,” Norman said.
“Bureta (Faraimo), Tepai (Moeroa), Halauafu (Lavaka) and Johnny (Folau), they all had an outstanding couple of days and they are only going to be better for that too.”
“If they get the call into first grade during the year I am sure they will go well,” he added.
Following the 2015 NRL Auckland Nines tournament, the Eels are auctioning signed, match-worn jerseys from each player in the 18-man squad. Click through to place a bid!