Chambers’ claws out for Storm skipper
Will Chambers admits he is as "nervous as a kitten" about lining up against his Melbourne Storm skipper Cameron Smith in tomorrow night's All Stars clash in Brisbane.
The Northern Territory-born Chambers, who has played his 129 NRL games under Smith, as well as his four Origins for Queensland and one Test for Australia, admitted the thought of being on the opposing side to a player he has looked up to for his entire career would be the toughest thing about the game.
"I'm nervous mate, I'm nervous. He's a special footballer that I've had a lot to do with over my career, and who I've looked up to," said Chambers, who is back playing league after a brief flirtation with rugby.
"Cam has helped me a lot with my footy. I probably wouldn't be the player I am today without him and the other two boys down there, Cooper (Cronk) and Billy (Slater)."
Chambers admitted he wondered early in the pre-season if he still had what it took to be an NRL player after coach Craig Bellamy introduced a tough new training program for the players. But he said he was "really looking forward to playing again".
The 27-year-old also said he had been very impressed with what he had seen of Brisbane's latest recruit, centre James Roberts, who will make his All Star debut in the indigenous team.
"He's very exciting, as you guys (media) already know," Chambers said. "I've seen him at full flight in training. Him and Jack Wighton and those young kids are all impressive. They're knocking on the door to go to the next level."
And the prospect of lining up against Roberts in Origin this year?
"We both play on the right so we're normally on opposite sides of the field ... thank God," Chambers said.
- WAYNE HEMING