Hodkinson happy to be 'Mr Fix It' for Sharks
The baby boom at the Cronulla Sharks - or the health of Matt Moylan's knee - might give Trent Hodkinson a third straight start with his new club against the Sydney Roosters on Friday.
Hodkinson has become somewhat of a "Mr Fix It" at the Sharks, as a well as a good luck charm.
Due to a niggling injury to regular half Moylan, Hodkinson has played the last two rounds against the Parramatta Eels and Melbourne Storm alongside regular No.7 Chad Townsend.
Moylan (knee/hamstring) and Josh Dugan (groin) did not do the field session at Southern Cross Group Stadium on Tuesday, but coach Shane Flanagan says both are "good chances" to play the Roosters.
If Moylan is passed fit, there is still the impending birth of Townsend's first child with partner Marissa that may result in a selection headache. The baby is due this week.
Luke Lewis and wife Sonia welcomed their second child, son Levi, nine days ago and prop forward Matt Prior and backrower Wade Graham are also heading for the labour ward in the coming months.
Hodkinson, 29, knows he has to bide his time and he's comfortable with that.
"That's the process I've got to go through at the moment," he told NRL.com.
"But I feel as though I've been here long enough that I can just jump into the team and not miss a beat. So if I do come in late I feel comfortable that I can do the job.
"I'm enjoying myself being back playing first grade. It's good fun."
If Townsend was to miss Friday night, Hodkinson's goal kicking abilities would be an added bonus to Flanagan.
"I just want to keep doing what I've been doing over nine years of NRL. The body is feeling really good. It's the best I've felt in a really long time," Hodkinson said.
"I'd like to thank the coaching staff and what they're doing with me, with a training schedule that's smarter.
"I've been in the NRL a long time so it's just all the management that comes with that. I'll just keep ticking the boxes."
Sitting on 158 NRL games, Hodkinson realises it could be a slow crawl to get nearer to 200.
"I knew the situation when I got here," he said. "I got my head around it right from the get-go.
"I just stay positive and I stay ready. That's what [coach] Flanno has told me that when the call-up comes I'm good to go, which has been the case the last couple of weeks.
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"I just want to keep doing the right things out there on the field and in the gym and make sure I am ready when I'm needed."
The Roosters do present a mouth-watering prospect for Hodkinson to renew old Origin memories against Cooper Cronk.
"Obviously he's a class player Cooper and any chance you get to play opposite a half like that it's very exciting. Hopefully I get the chance but we just have to wait and see."