NRL News

Woods relishing showdown with Klemmer

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Aaron Woods wants to see David Klemmer's eyes rolling on Friday night.

That's when he'll know he's struck a nerve with Klemmer.

"It's not hard," Woods said.

The two best mates will go head-to-head when Klemmer makes his much-anticipated debut for Newcastle against Woods and Cronulla at McDonald Jones Stadium.

A year after starting together in the NRL for the first time, the Canterbury discards' careers have taken unexpected new paths ahead of the 2019 season-opening weekend.

"It's always good when you play against your mate, especially your best mate," Woods said.

"I know he's really excited playing in front of a Newcastle crowd as well, so he's pumped.

"I think we're all pumped - it's round one, it's finally here."

Woods admits there's been plenty of banter during the week as the two NSW State of Origin stalwarts and long-time representative teammates prepare to go hammer and tong.

"You ring up, have a good laugh. It's just going to be funny seeing him in a different outfit this time so I can rip into him for once," Woods said.

"We know things that get under each other's skin and, when we do it, we still have a laugh about it because we know we're just trying to bait each other.

"It's all good fun. He'll probably come out and throw one at me. It's just all part of rugby league and we have a good laugh at it after the game."

Woods will pack down in the front row with Andrew Fifita, another Blues bruise brother who can't wait to get another crack at Klemmer.

"I love versing Klem," Fifita said.

"Off the field, he's one of my good mates. We've played in teams together in the past.

"Going head-to-head, look, it's 80 minutes and no one's mates on the field.

"I have 16 other blokes I've got to look after and he's got 16 blokes and it's a battle. We're here to play footy and earn two (competition) points."

© AAP 2019