Jake Connor has admitted the prospect of playing for England has crossed his mind, and conceded he may have to consider changing his ways if Wayne Bennett told him to reign it in.
The 2018 season has seen the 23-year-old hit new heights, playing a pivotal role for the Black and Whites throughout the season.
Starting the season predominantly from the bench, the former Huddersfield ace quickly established himself in the centres before injuries to Marc Sneyd and Albert Kelly saw him move into the halves.
But Connor has caught the eye wherever he’s played, not only for his wind-up antics but also moments of genuine class.
Such has been the level of his performances, there have been calls for him to be called up to England’s squad for the mid-season Test with New Zealand in Denver next month, and Connor made no secret of his international aspirations.
“Obviously, I think every player has thought once about playing for England,” he said.
“It’d be a massive achievement for anyone. I’m not going to lie, obviously I’d like to be there but obviously, it goes on form and there is a lot of world class players in there. I have to be consistent and keep going and one day hopefully I will.
“I can’t look too much ahead and just have to focus on the week ahead and get that consistency. You never know. Just keep playing well and every player dreams of it.”
Despite his man of the match display in last week’s Magic Weekend victory, Lee Radford instead focused on his wish for Connor to tone down his verbals – only to admit Connor blamed everyone else.
“I think Lee Radford is just with all the other ones. He’s always against me!
“Sometimes I like winding up people and sometimes I don’t. It’s just on the day really. After the game we shake hands and it’s all over. It’s all fun and games.”
But he accepted that a word from England coach Bennett may make him consider things, while he also said his ability to play in a variety of positions could work for or against him in the selection stakes.
“You’d have to wouldn’t you,” was his response when asked if he’d listen to Bennett.
“You like to have set positions and people who play out and out halfbacks or out and out centres. I’m not going to lie, it is tough but the only thing I can do is keep playing well and focus on that. You never know.”