Kerr-boom: The day young Dragon nearly punched coach McGregor

Kerr-boom: The day young Dragon nearly punched coach McGregor

February 7, 2019

Josh Kerr threatened to punch Paul McGregor when the St George Illawarra coach told him he had been drafted into the Indigenous All Stars game.

In the same week NRL boss Todd Greenberg described the incident-packed off-season a ''train wreck'', he can take heart from the sheer excitement Kerr felt when told he would play against the New Zealand Maori Kiwis next Friday.

In shock: Josh Kerr at Gwyneville Primary School on Thursday.Credit:Sylvia Liber

Kerr, a 22-year-old prop, is yet to play an NRL game for the Dragons. He thought he was in trouble for busting Cameron McInnes' finger during a training drill when summonsed to McGregor's office.

"I was playing basketball with the boys, and that day Cameron McInnes has tried to tackle me and had a compound dislocation of his finger,'' said Kerr, as he took part in the start of the club's community blitz at Gwynneville Public School.

"My head was falling off already. I walked up to the room, and Mary was like, 'Take a seat mate'.

"Then he was like, 'Congratulations, mate'. I was like, 'What?'

"He said, 'You're in, you've made the Indigenous All Stars team'. I said, 'Mary, if you’re taking the piss, I’m going to start punching you'. He was cracking up.

"I started heavy breathing. Wow, I was just so lost for words. This has got to be a joke. I've never played first grade, played in one trial against a Super League team. I can’t believe it’s happening.''

For any concerned Dragons fans, McInnes has made a rapid recovery and already resumed training.

Kerr, meanwhile, could not wipe the smile off his face as he gets the chance to represent his culture and family.

"I had a few tears in my eyes when he told me,'' said Kerr, who high-fived the camera crews before he joined the kids for the community blitz.

"It’s honestly a dream come true. You think it but it never happens. I'm tingling just thinking about it now. I’m feel ready for it. I’m confident. It's something different about playing NRL and playing for your culture where you have all your mob out there and you wear your heart on your sleeve.

"Hopefully one day I could play for Australia. Who knows, that’s a dream of mine too. This has blown me out of the water.''

The Indigenous All Stars had several players pull out through injury, while Ben Barba was axed after being rubbed out of the game. Kerr will play along side Andrew Fifita, Latrell Mitchell and Nathan Peats against a Maori All Stars team with plenty of size, including Jordan McLean and Jesse Bromwich.

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