New Titan declares he's ready for Roosters
Less than eight hours after landing in Australia Gold Coast Titans recruit Joe Greenwood has declared that he is ready to make his NRL debut against the Roosters at Cbus Super Stadium on Saturday night.
Titans coach Neil Henry told NRL.com last week that Greenwood would only be considered for Round 1 if he had a week training with the team and although he didn't participate in Monday's session, will have two further training sessions to get accustomed to his new team's style of play.
Greenwood's signing for the 2017 season was only confirmed last Monday and given the visa requirements he needed to fulfil the 23-year-old wasn't expected to be in Australia in enough time to be considered for the season opener.
But after playing for St Helens in the opening round of Super League three weeks ago Greenwood was adamant that any potential bout of jetlag wouldn't stop him from lining up to make his NRL debut this weekend.
"I'm ready to play whenever they want me now. I'm ready to go for Round 1," Greenwood said as he met his new teammates for the first time on Monday.
"There's no excuses for me for getting off the plane and the game's this weekend. I'm going to be ready and then it's down to Neil when he picks the team.
"We've had a good chat so I'll see how training goes this week and then hopefully I can be in contention for a spot for this weekend.
"I ain't had a training session yet 'cause I've just come this morning so hopefully get into it this week and then it's all down to Neil."
With Chris McQueen locked in on the left side and Kevin Proctor to play on the right, the rangy back-rower will be pushing for one of three places on the Titans bench with Karl Lawton confirmed as the bench utility for Round 1.
If he is included in the 21-man squad to be named by Henry on Tuesday Greenwood will be a step closer to facing the Roosters for a second time having lined up against them for St Helens in last year's World Club Series.
The Roosters inflicted a 38-12 hiding on that occasion and Greenwood is under no illusion about the challenge awaiting him in the NRL.
"It's going to be tough. I've heard from the Aussies and the Kiwis in the Super League that it's a bit different so it's going to be a big challenge for me and I can't wait to get on with it and step up to it," he said.
"I like challenges and that's why I came over here. To challenge myself and hopefully win stuff with the team.
"I expect it to be a lot quicker. With the pitches it's going to be a fast track so hopefully get up to speed with that.
"It's not going to be too much different physical wise so I'm ready to get into it."
Coming through the grades Greenwood looked up to St Helens legend James Graham and admitted that Graham's success with the Bulldogs in the NRL ignited a desire to one day test himself in rugby league's toughest competition.
"That's the biggest thing in a rugby league career, it's a short life and you need to test yourself as much as you can," Greenwood said.
"I love challenges and it's going to be a big test but watching 'Jammer' coming through the ranks, I used to basically idolise him and then he's done really well for Canterbury and he's kicked on and hopefully I can do the same."