SIMONE Smith and representative selection are two items that have gone hand in hand over the last 12 months.
Her selection in the NSW Women’s Koori side for their clash with Queensland 12 months ago started a whirlwind year-long period where she continues to tick every box that needs to be ticked.
Smith has again been selected in the same NSW Women’s Koori side for the match at Narrabeen on November 6.
But with selection in every representative team there comes a time of reflection.
And while Smith has no intention of handing back her NSW Women’s Koori jersey, it made her appreciate the bigger picture.
“I put myself in the shoes of players like Inglis and Thurston last week when I was selected,” she said.
“While I’m not professional like them I now understand why they get tired and want to have that break from footy when they can.”
Adding to her selection in the same side 12 months ago, Smith was a member of the East Coast Dolphins ladies league tag who won the country championships at Cessnock earlier this year.
Smith starred in that successful campaign before she was instrumental in Port City Breakers’ undefeated run to the Group 3 ladies league tag premiership.
It was all capped off when she was named as the Group 3 representative player of the year across both male and female competitions.
And if that’s not enough time with a footy in her hands she was asked to play rugby 7s at the Central Coast this weekend.
“But I had a lot on and wanted to focus on rugby league so I had to knock that back,” she said.
“Everything is pretty full on and it’s a bit like when I was younger I was doing things every weekend, but it’s good to be on the rep field and I’m stoked to be in the NSW Koori side.
“League is something I’m passionate about and I’m glad I’ve got the opportunity to take on Queensland again.”
When asked how this selection compared to other successes throughout 2016, Smith said it was up towards the top.
“I’m passionate about my culture, being aboriginal and being able to represent my community and my people,” she said.
After the game on November 6 an Indigenous team will be selected which will play in a double-header before the NRL's annual Rugby League All Stars match.
It will be part of the week-long celebrations of Indigenous Rugby League to be held in Newcastle in February next year.
“After the year I’ve had, selection in the Indigenous team would be a really good finish to the end of this year and a good way to move into the beginning of next year,” Smith said.