Addo-Carr reflects on breakout year

It's a throwaway line that's probably overused in rugby league, but when it comes to Josh Addo-Carr, 12 months really is a long time.

This time last year, the freakishly-fast winger was playing for the Redfern All Blacks as they claimed the NSW Koori Knockout at Leichhardt Oval.

It was a tremendous achievement for the proud Indigenous man, but little did he know it would spark a fairytale 12-month period that would culminate in an NRL premiership with the Melbourne Storm.

After stints with the Sharks and Wests Tigers that tallied just nine NRL games, Addo-Carr was snapped up by the Storm with no guarantees that he would fill the left wing spot vacated by the rugby-bound Marika Koroibete. 

His raw speed and ability to find the try-line were unparalleled but there were concerns about his defence and whether he'd fit into the Storm culture. 

However, it only took a couple of weeks for the 'Fox' to convince Storm coach Craig Bellamy that he was the right man for the job. 

Bellamy doesn't get too many things wrong, and he was spot on about his new recruit with Addo-Carr finishing his first season in the Victorian capital with a league-high 26 line breaks to go with 23 tries, including a double in the 34-6 NRL Telstra Grand Final win over North Queensland. 

 


His story is a remarkable one, but despite the setbacks he's had in life, confidence has never been an issue as NRL.com found out in a pre-season interview.

"I want to cement a spot in first grade, I want to play State of Origin, and I want to play for Australia. I want to play 300 games. Those are my rugby league goals," Addo-Carr said back in January. 

"But I need to earn that, and if I can play some good football for the Storm then hopefully I can tick those off down the track. 

"One of my biggest goals is to get a premiership under my belt, and that's another reason why I came here because I think the Storm are in a good place to help me achieve that."

Plenty of players can talk the talk but few can back it up on the field quite like Addo-Carr. 

"This time last year I was playing in the Koori Knockout so it's been one hell of a 12 months for me and my family," he told NRL.com after Sunday's NRL grand final win. 

"I can't believe it. It's a dream come true. I'm very proud to be in this team; it's been one hell of a 12 months."

His talent earned him a contract at the Storm, but it was Melbourne's ethos that made him a premiership winner. 

"I owe this club a lot. They've definitely shaped me to be the football player that I am today. I honestly can't thank them enough," he said. 

"I came down to Melbourne not knowing what was going to happen. I knew it was going to be a tough pre-season but I was willing to make it work.

"I had a lot of competition for that wing spot but I put in the hard work and now I'm so grateful for everything that's happened since. 

"I worked really hard on my defence this year because that's what we pride ourselves on down here. If we can knuckle down in defence then we know our attack will come on the back of it.

"Everyone in this organisation has shaped me into the man and the player that I am today, and I definitely wouldn't be where I am now without my family."