Michael Dawson is relishing being part of England's World Cup squad but will make no brash pronouncements as to whether he should be picked to face Algeria on Friday.
Dawson's hopes of going to South Africa looked to have been shattered after he was axed from Fabio Capello's final 23-man squad two weeks ago.
But 72 hours later he was on a plane to Rustenburg after skipper Rio Ferdinand pulled out with a knee injury and Ledley King's groin problem has thrust him further into the spotlight.
"For me it would be a dream to play - I've said that for a long time, since before I got in the squad but we've got Jamie Carragher and Matthew Upson as well," said Tottenham's player of the year.
"We're just concentrating on training and hopefully I'll do the best I can and then we'll see.
"I'm excited for Friday. The World Cup is an amazing experience and, from getting a call from the FA to say Rio was injured, it's all happened really quickly.
"To be part of it is great and I'm enjoying every minute of it.
"Unfortunately Ledley came off the other day with a groin injury but it's not too bad.
"He's out of the game on Friday but it's the manager's decision who he picks. I'm always hopeful."
Dawson, 26, is adamant the mood in the England camp is upbeat despite England being held to a 1-1 draw by the United States.
He said: "Hopefully we'll get a win under our belts on Friday. We got a point against the USA. We would have liked to get more, but it wasn't to be. The mood is positive."
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