Loomberah farm boy Jack Cameron has just experienced the biggest year of his young life, after leaving home to play for the Newcastle Knights’ under-20 side. But he knows an even bigger year awaits as he looks to secure a new contract to keep his NRL dream alive.
The 19-year-old prop’s two-year Newcastle deal ends at the end of the 2019 season, meaning he has one year left to convince the Knights that he is worth investing further in, or perhaps another club will swoop.
“It’s been good, I’ve enjoyed it,” he said. “I’m sort of happy with what I’ve done.”
Cameron has passed the first step in his protracted audition for the big time – making the transition from the farm to life in the city and playing 10 matches off the bench for the Knights in Jersey Flegg, including their 30-26 preliminary final loss to Penrith at Leichhardt Oval on September 15.
He also won a grand final playing for the Macquarie Scorpions’ reserve-grade side in the Newcastle competition last Sunday – securing him back-to-back premierships. The Knights offered him a deal after his strong showing for North Tamworth in their grand final win over Narrabri in 2017.
It’s sort of satisfying to know that you’re going forward.- Jack Cameron
His downtime before starting pre-season training with the Knights will be punctuated by a match. He was named in the Newcastle-based Emerging Rebels under-20 rep side, who play Melbourne’s under-20 rep side in Melbourne in late October.
Speaking to The Northern Daily Leader ahead of returning to Loomberah this weekend, Cameron did not boldly declare he would secure another contract, but he is pleased with his progression and looks forward to taking on a leadership role in the side next season.
He is “loving” life in Newcastle and wants that to continue beyond next season.
“It’s sort of satisfying to know that you’re going forward,” he said, adding: “I thought I’d be lucky to get five [Jersey Flegg] games. So I was pretty happy, at the end of the day, to get 10.”
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