Peachey's compelling audition to be permanent fullback
Tyrone Peachey wants to make fullback his permanent first grade position after badgering Anthony Griffin to give him the No.1 jersey and then starring in Penrith's stunning come-from-behind win over Manly.
Peachey had only ever played a few games of juniors at the back before being named there earlier in the week, with regular custodian Dallin Watene-Zelezniak returning from a hamstring injury via the wing.
He looked right at home throughout against the Sea Eagles even when they shot to a 24-6 lead, with Peachey finishing the game with a try assist, two line break assists, three tackle busts and 116 running metres.
Tellingly he also safely defused a late Daly Cherry-Evans bomb as Manly looked to claw back their lead having spilled an earlier one.
Peachey revealed he had been in Griffin's ear prior to team selection about being able to play 80 minutes at fullback, and now wants to stay there.
"I was geeing (Penrith's coaching staff) up and then Hook called me into the office and actually said I'm playing fullback and I had a massive smile on my face and I said 'about time'," Peachey said of his latest positional switch.
"I'd love to (stay at fullback). Hopefully I didn't stuff up too much and we'll go through video on Monday, there will be a few things we can fix up position-wise, just work on and hopefully still be there next week."
Griffin would not be drawn on whether Peachey will remain in the No.1 next week against Canberra, but was impressed with his performance nonetheless.
"I thought he went alright," Griffin said.
"(He) took a good ball at the end to win us the game. For his first go he was alright. Got to do a bit more work on him but I thought he did a great job."
While his uncle David was one of the most entertaining fullbacks of the 90s at Cronulla, Peachey drew on the advice and training work with Panthers assistants Cameron Ciraldo and Peter Wallace in the lead-up to his first outing at the back.
Peachey is the first to admit his utility value is his biggest asset, with his ability to play in the forwards, halves and outside backs earning him a start for NSW in this year's series win, but less than half an hour's game time across the series.
The 26-year-old is moving to the Gold Coast next season on a lucrative three-year deal, with a regular first grade starting position a big drawcard under former Panthers NSW Cup coach Garth Brennan.
Fullback could well be on the cards for the future Titan given Michael Gordon is contracted but will be 35 next season, however Peachey was reluctant to discuss where he would be turning out in 2019.
"He's got his own team to worry about this year and I haven't thought about it too much," Peachey said.
"I want to finish strong this year for Penrith and try and finish on a good note.
"I love playing 80 minutes and I just love playing footy. But I know personally that my best position is probably that utility role because I can cover so many positions which is a bit of a burden.
"But I'm happy to be fullback at the moment and to come away with the win."