Wesser Hopeful

Penrith fullback Rhys Wesser, the man most likely to benefit from Darren Lockyer's move to five-eighth, isn't getting carried away with his chances of playing State of Origin this season.

Wesser was controversially ignored for a place in the Maroons squad last year when Brisbane and Queensland coach Wayne Bennett elected to retain Lockyer at fullback for the State of Origin series.

However, Bennett this week announced Lockyer would play five-eighth for Brisbane in 2004 in an effort to spice up the Broncos' attack.

Bennett indicated he would like to see Lockyer retained at fullback for Queensland and Australia, however, the Maroons five-eighth options are thin on the ground, particularly in the wake of Ben Ikin's retirement.

"I haven't really thought about it," Wesser said when asked whether his chances of playing for Queensland had improved.

"The thing is the Queensland selectors might pick him at fullback anyway.

"I'm not sure what's going to happen. It may open a door for me. If it does happen I'm looking forward to playing Origin."

Wesser was outstanding last season for Penrith and could consider himself unlucky not to have won a spot in the Queensland side.

He and Canberra fullback Clinton Schifcofske, whose omission last season also raised eyebrows, will come under scrutiny if Queensland selectors - and new coach Michael Hagan - elect to name Lockyer at five-eighth.

Both players would love the opportunity to play for the Maroons in 2004.

"I'm going to take it as it comes," Wesser said.

"It's a childhood dream and I would love to play State of Origin."

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