SIMONE Smith is a believer that to be successful you have to fail every now and then.
It’s why her selection in the Australian Jillaroos team for Friday’s (May 5) Trans Tasman test against New Zealand in Canberra ensured she felt “shell-shocked.”
The game kicks off at 5.30pm.
For many years, the talented 24-year-old has been on the cusp of national selection, but when push came to shove she had to leave the squad at the end of the week and work on something.
But now she can finally tick off “Jillaroo” on items yet to be completed on her rugby league bucket list after being named at halfback.
“This time last year I was going home, but this time I’m still in camp and about to make my Australian debut on Friday,” she said.
“I’m a believer in everything happens for a reason and it’s important to use setbacks as motivation.
“I know failure is a part of success so I think that’s been the biggest lesson for me. The one lesson I’ve taken from it all is that I didn’t let the lows and bad times take me off the rails.”
It’s the final piece of an impressive representative jigsaw puzzle.
Smith has already claimed Port City Breakers club and Group 3 player of the year awards, before she made the transition to Indigenous All Stars and was then named in the Newcastle Knights women’s team.
I know failure is a part of success.Simone Smith
“I’m a bit shell shocked, but at the same time incredibly honoured,” she said.
“I can finally now say I’m going to be a Jillaroo and playing in the green and gold is everyone’s dream in whatever sport they choose.”
She knows it’s one challenge to be named in an Australian team, but it’s another to stay there.
Smith was now looking forward to the next challenge of continuing her form so she appears at the World Cup in December.
“It’s all about trying to maintain your spot,” she said.
“Being in the halves is one of the toughest positions because there are a few of us in the squad, but that’s a good thing.
“We’re all competitive and push each other so we can be the best players we can be.
“You can’t be too complacent because you never know what happens next – it’s about maintaining that.”