After missing the final cut for the NSW State of Origin team, the last thing Tim Robinson was expecting was to represent Australia.
Robinson had been part of the Blues over 35s squad, but was squeezed out at the selection table.
However, a standout performance at a training camp in February in Brisbane has led to Robinson a spot in the Australian squad for the World Cup in Malaysia starting next month.
“I certainly didn’t expect it,” he said. “I’ve been playing since I was 20 and just love being around the game, whether it’s playing or coaching or training, so it feels like a nice reward.
“I went up to be part of the Aussie training camp and really didn’t think much more of it, after missing out on the Origin team last year, I wasn’t thinking about playing for Australia.”
It’s a big year for Robinson, whose fiance Lauren Rynehart is due with their first baby in July and he also took out the NBL’s best television coverage award for his work on Fox Sports.
The Australian over 35s men is the only division heading to the World Cup defending the crown.
In 2015, New Zealand upstaged the Aussies, which provides extra incentive for Robinson.
“It’s a bit different for us, going in as underdogs,” he said. “Australia go to these tournaments expecting to make the final and to win, so there’s a challenge for us against New Zealand, who have a very similar squad to the one they had in 2015.”
The women’s teams are expected to be announced in coming days, with Wollongong’s Jess McCall expected to be included.