Huge thrill for little Dragon

Matthew Xuereb, who has a heart condition, leads the Dragons out tonight. Picture: SYLVIA LIBERIf the St George Illawarra Dragons are looking for inspiration for tonight’s clash with the Cowboys then they need look no further than the six-year-old Matthew Xuereb.
Nanjing Night Net

Matthew, who lives at Flinders, is the winner of the i98FM’s Dragon for a Day competition. He was nominated by his mother Belinda for being supportive of his brother Jordan and the Shellharbour Sharks under 9s, despite not being able to play himself.

Matthew, who is a big fan of the Dragons, is unable to play football due to a heart condition.

‘‘He had open heart surgery at 21 months,’’ Belinda said.

“Matt would love to be able to play football, and I am sure it is hard for him to watch his brother from the sidelines every weekend.

“He is so brave though and cheers on his brother and his team every week… he just loves being involved in whatever way he can.’’

Matthew, who lists Jamie Soward as his favourite player, attends Nazereth Catholic Primary School. He can’t play any contact sports, but does enjoy golf and swimming.

Tonight he will walk out with the Dragon’s captain, Ben Hornby and witness the all-important coin toss.

‘‘I am happy and excited,’’ Matthew said yesterday.

Matthew will meet players, see the dressing room and receive VIP seating thanks to McDonald’s in the Illawarra and the St George Illawarra Dragons.

“He is so thrilled to be given the chance to meet all his favourite players and watch the game with our family,” Belinda said.

‘‘It’s a really special treat for him.’’

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.