After capping her already-massive season with one of NSW Country's top awards last weekend Orange Emus halfback Em McDonald said her sights are firmly set on winning another Buildcorp Super W berth for the looming 2020 season.
McDonald, who led Emus to the Westfund Ferguson Cup grand final and Central West to a country championship win, was crowned the Corellas' back-of-the-year after a monster Chikarovski Cup campaign at Narrabeen last weekend.
Her performance in the side's lone win over Sydney Gold was particularly impressive, controlling the tempo of the clash from the base of the ruck and darting over for an opportunistic try as the Corellas claimed a last-gasp, 27-24 win.
The Chikarovski Cup, a tri-series between the Corellas, Sydney Gold and Sydney Blue, is a vital facet of the Waratahs' Super W selection process and McDonald's performance is expected to plonk her firmly on the radar.
But she made her Super W debut with the ACT Brumbies last year and with that franchise's trials coming up soon too, she said she's not hanging her hat on a spot in the Waratahs' squad for their three-peat bid.
"Finger's crossed Super W's next again," McDonald said, with her eventual end goal still a place in the Wallaroos' squad.
Obviously the Wallaroos squad is picked after the Super W and that's something I want to achieve.Em McDonald
"I think the Waratahs release their squad in about a month and the Brumbies trials are coming up too. Obviously the Wallaroos squad is picked after the Super W and that's something I want to achieve, but whatever happens, happens."
She also admitted she was shocked with her gong last weekend, conceding she assumed it would be awarded to the any of the side's Super W-winning Waratahs aces, among them Katrina Barker and Maya Stewart.
"I was really surprised, there's a lot more experienced players in the side like 'Cheech' (Barker) and Maya Stewart," McDonald said, also heaping praise on the pair's tutelage.
"I can't thank them all enough for helping me through the weekend too because, honestly, that was the first time I actually thought 'yeah, I understand what's going on' (in 15s) because [the Westfund Ferguson Cup] is 10-a-side and the 15s.
"I just stuck to what I know, but I feel like I played well and I'm stoked with the season, there's been some massive achievements and I've improved a lot of aspects in my games.
"I couldn't do any of it without my friends and my family either, they run me all over the countryside and support and help, so I have to thank them massively."
McDonald was joined in the Corellas squad by Emus teammates Milika Tuinakauvadra and Jacky Lyden, along with a host of other country championship-winning Blue Bulls.
West Wyalong's Krystal Fyfe was awarded the Corellas' best forward while Hunter's Leilani Nathan was crowned player-of-the-year.
Travis Brooke, who plays in Newcastle but represented Far North Coast at the country championships, was crowned the NSW Country Cockatoos' player-of-the-year, winning the Will Tanner Medal.
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