Campese confirms he’ll play for Italy in World Cup qualifiers

Former Hull Kingston Rovers captain Terry Campese has revealed he will be putting his hand up to play for Italy in their upcoming World Cup qualifiers.

The Azzuri face Serbia and Wales in their two qualifying fixtures, knowing that if they win both, they will be guaranteed a place at next year’s World Cup in Australia, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea.

Campese, who will be captain-coach of his boyhood club Queanbeyan Blues next year after securing an exit from Hull KR following their relegation, admits playing for Italy is something he’s harboured an ambition to do for some time.

“It’s something I’ve always wanted to do,” Campese told the Canberra Times.

“I represented them in the sevens when I was a bit younger and always wanted to put that jumper back on and get the chance.”

And Campese admits the Blues are a great opportunity for him to start off what could be a promising coaching career.

“Obviously when you talk about post-football and what happens after rugby, I’ve been thinking about [coaching] for a couple of years now,” Campese said.

“My passion has always been rugby league… and this is a good first, I think. We see with Simon now making the transition to the Knights reserve grade system.

“Hopefully I get experience here and be successful and hopefully some opportunities come down the track.

“It’s something that I’ll give 110 per cent in and it’ll be good to give back to the club that gave me an opportunity to start my rugby league career.”