Rep Round well-timed for in-form Eels
Parramatta utility Clint Gutherson is relishing the chance to add a second City Origin jersey to his collection while plenty of his rejuvenated clubmates also get the chance to run around for a variety of representative teams this weekend.
Gutherson told NRL.com his coach Brad Arthur is more than happy for his players to be involved in representative fixtures, and moreso given the blue and golds are back in form with three wins on the trot erasing memories of an earlier four-match losing run.
Gutherson is joined in City Origin camp by David Gower while young prop Daniel Alvaro is in the Country squad. Kaysa Pritchard and Suaia Matagi (Samoa) plus Siosaia Vave (Tonga) and uncapped second rower Marata Niukore (Cook Island) will all play on Saturday.
"Everyone's going to come back full of confidence and ready to bring it back for next week's game against the Roosters and see where it goes from there," Gutherson said.
"We (Parramatta) lost four on the trot there which wasn't the best but we're back to how we like to play and everyone's enjoying their footy again.
"We've won three in a row going into this week so it's a good time to come and give a few of the older boys a bit of a rest and the younger boys can jump out and do whatever they like [in terms of rep games]. It's come at a good time, then we'll recharge and get back into it.
"We've got a reward with some of the boys in some rep teams and the rest will have a light week at training, they'll probably get away somewhere and everyone's going to recharge."
Of the players receiving Arthur's blessing to play this weekend, Gutherson added: "He just told us if you didn't have any injuries you were sweet to play.
"He enjoys it, he likes watching us play these games. Especially the Pacific Tests with all the boys, we've got a lot at Parra and they're looking forward to getting out and whacking each other. Hopefully they all come back all right and there's no injuries!"
The 22-year-old playmaker said he was hopeful his solid form to start the year would see him earn a second City call-up.
"After playing last year I was looking forward to trying to get back into it and lucky enough got back into it," he said.
He nominated Penrith's Kangaroos reps James Tamou and Matt Moylan as two players he was looking forward to playing alongside.
"Tamou and Moylan, I haven't played with them before, they've played at the top level so I'm looking forward to that," he added.