Josh Addo-Carr says he has dealt with the disappointment of not being selected for NSW, insisting he can regain his spot in the side later this year with good performances for Canterbury.
Addo-Carr left NSW coach Brad Fittler with food for thought after finishing with a double in the Bulldogs’ 30-18 loss to Penrith on Friday.
Since leaving Melbourne the winger has continued to score tries – Friday’s double took him to eight tries in 12 Bulldogs games – but that was not enough for Fittler to stick by him.
Daniel Tupou was the preferred option on the wing and for the first time since he made his debut for the Blues in 2018, Addo-Carr will be watching Wednesday’s State of Origin opener from home.
“I thought I would be more rattled than I have been,” he told AAP.
“That’s footy and it’s not my year, those other boys have the opportunity to put on the sky blue jersey and I know what that feels like.
“I can take it one of two ways; sulk or work harder. I’m going to try my hardest to get back in the team, I can’t just sit there feeling sorry for myself.
“I’ve been in tougher situations before and I’m a supporter this year. I’m trying to play my part and do the best I can (for Canterbury).
“I’ve always prided myself on working hard and I’ll do that to get back in the Blues side. My sole focus now is on the Bulldogs and all that (non-selection) is behind me.”
Addo-Carr will have just two chances to press a claim for a NSW recall when the Bulldogs face Parramatta on Monday week before a game with fellow strugglers Wests Tigers on Sunday.
Canterbury’s loss to Penrith was a microcosm of their season. They left themselves with a mountain to climb before showing green shoots in attack and then fading late.
Both interim coach Mick Potter and Addo-Carr have said the Bulldogs lack toughness in defence and undo good work with errors.
“It comes down to resilience,” Addo-Carr said.
“There’s some things you can control, we’re trying hard and competing but we’re not playing smart.
“We need to play with intensity with and without the ball but I feel like we are getting there.
“We have to train like that and that’s what pre-season is for, if you train fast and smart, you play that way.
“I have got full faith in where we are going and I feel like we are beginning to score more points.”