In an incredible gesture during the Kangaroos World Cup campaign, Kangaroos and Penrith star Nathan Cleary offered a fan the opportunity of a lifetime when he invited him to practice and play.
Todd Roper, a freelance content creator based out of Manchester and a big Panthers fan, wrote to Cleary on Instagram asking him if he’d like to record some content during practice.
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No answer was expected from Roper, however he clearly loved the idea and answered and invited him to the kangaroos camp.
“I saw the boys (the kangaroos) stay in Manchester and I saw Nathan’s story on Instagram,” Roper told 7NEWS reporter Michelle Bishop.
“I messaged him because I’m a huge Penrith fan and wasn’t expecting a response and he got back to me and said I can come down for training and film all the players training and stuff like that.
“I messaged him and said I’m a freelancer and can provide him with some content while he’s here and he said that would be great and he would love it.”
Apparently, Roper invited to practice and he became part of the team during the World Cup.
Roper said the experience was “amazing” and he enjoyed every moment spent at Kangaroos camp.
“It was incredible for me, it was amazing, my career blew up massively,” Roper said.
“Having a fan base in Australia with all the players and their families and friends has been great.
Roper said he’s formed a friendship with Cleary and he can’t speak highly enough of the Panthers star.
“He (Clary) did everything for me. Even last night he celebrated with the boys (after the final) and he said how great it was that I was there,” said Roper.
“The first time I met Nathan was at Headingley before the opening game, I saw him on the pitch and I walked over and said hello.
“He’s a really great guy. It wasn’t embarrassing at all, it was great to meet him.
“I follow these guys all the time and it’s been great to be around them.
The avid photographer and videographer said the access he received was “amazing”.
“I’ve only been making videos for two and a half years, so doing this type of stuff with these guys has been amazing,” he said.
“He (Cleary) gave me access to film the boys at training sessions, which I never expected.
“Nathan is one of the best guys you can meet.
“He has the world at his feet and he’s a really good guy.
“The whole team was great and welcomed me with open arms.”
Roper said that some players liked the camera and the attention more than others, and all players enjoyed the content.
“Tino (Fa’asuamaleaui) liked the cameras, Gus (Angus Crichton) liked all the photography and stuff, and he appreciated all of the content. In the end, all the boys enjoyed it,” said Roper.
“Foxxy (Josh Addo-Carr) is definitely the loudest, 100 percent, great conversation and a perfect laugh.
“They have some good characters there, all the guys just bounce off each other and it’s great to see a lot of different players coming from different teams and having that energy around each other is great.”
Roper plans to travel to Australia in the New Year and meet up with the Kangaroos players.
“I’m going to Australia in January and I’m hoping to catch up with the guys and they’ve all said it’ll be good to see me over there (Australia),” he said.
https://7news.com.au/sport/rugby-league/how-a-chance-instagram-message-to-kangaroos-star-nathan-cleary-gave-fan-an-incredible-experience-c-8945442 NRL: Kangaroos star Nathan Cleary offers fans ‘incredible’ experience as he invites him to Australia camp