Father knows best and Smith won’t be hanging up the boots
CAMERON Smith’s father says the Melbourne skipper’s talk of retirement is grandfinal mind games, revealing the Queensland maestro will sign another contract to play in the NRL next season.
On the eve of tonight’s Storm-Roosters grand final, Wayne Smith gave a rare insight into his champion son.
He spoke about the Storm skipper’s future in rugby league, how the Cowboys once tried to sign Smith and addressed rumours of a feud with former clubmate Cooper Cronk.
Smith plays a 384th game tonight and has raised the prospect of retirement if the Storm win back-to-back titles.
But Smith senior is adamant his son will soldier on in 2019, claiming talk of quitting was a tactic designed to take the heat off teammate Billy Slater over last week’s shoulder-charge controversy.
“Cameron won’t retire,” Wayne Smith told The Sunday Telegraph. “I know Cameron wants to play on, 100 per cent.’’
Smith plays his seventh grand final for the Storm tonight, but if North Queensland scouts had their way, he would have forged a long career at the the Cowboys.
“We had an approach from the Cowboys and they were keen for him to move up to Townsville,” Smith senior said.
“Cameron was only 17 at the time and we didn’t want him leaving home ( in Bris- bane) at such a young age.’’
Smith and Cronk were teammates for almost two decades, but the champion duo were rocked by speculation this year they had fallen out.
“I’ve heard the whispers (of a feud), so I asked Cam about it,” Wayne said.
“Cam said he is pretty bemused by it all. I honestly don’t know if there is anything to it.’’
Cameron Smith with his proud father, Wayne.