Star Roosters recruit Angus Crichton admits it's an unusual feeling sitting on the bench for the first 60 minutes of an NRL game and says his goal is to again be an 80-minute man on the right edge.
Crichton's Roosters debut came against his former club in a 26-16 loss to the Rabbitohs on Friday night and he was eased in off the bench having had a limited pre-season due to a shoulder operation.
There was little Crichton could have done to affect the result in 20 minutes, though he did his best to get involved. He's not sure what the plan is moving forward but was adamant he wanted to go back to being an 80-minute second-rower by impressing coach Trent Robinson at every opportunity.
"That's a decision for Robbo to make; for me as a player, all I can do is put my best foot forward training every week and put my hand up, put my heart out on that field every weekend," Crichton said.
"I knew I was coming off the bench [in round one], I didn't know how long or what his plan was with when he wanted to put me on. But yeah, obviously I would've liked a bit more time.
"For me, all I can do is play footy and work with what I get, so that's what I'm trying to do."
The man who did start on the right edge, popular club veteran and general Mr Fix-It Mitch Aubusson, had a fine game on the right side with 53 tackles and a try.
Crichton said while he wasn't fazed which side of the field he plays on, skipper Boyd Cordner has the left back row spot sewn up.
"If you do pigeon-hole yourself right or left, you're cutting your opportunities in half but Boyd Cordner is the captain and he's an 80-minute player on that left edge, so I'll be putting my hand up to make that right edge position my own," Crichton added.
Crichton also wasn't about to try and shoehorn his way into the middle forward rotation.
"No [I'm not], I want to make that right edge position [mine]. I want to be an 80-minute backrower, that's what, in my eyes, that's what I want to do and that's what I'm going to put my hand up to do," he said.
In what was an at-times feisty clash, Crichton said he didn't get too much lip from his former teammates.
"Yeah, they were alright. Cody [Walker] got a bit fiery there," he said.
"He was carrying on a bit … I expected that from Cody, he's a bit of a hothead and can carry on at the best of times so I expect nothing less from him. But it was good to see all the boys, I hadn't seen a few of them for a while. There's no bad blood there, I'm good mates with all of them."
Physically Crichton he said he felt fully recovered from the shoulder injury and shrugged away the ice pack strapped to his leg over a minor cork.
"Yeah, I'm physically there. I'm stringing all my training sessions back to back and ramping up my contact," he said.
"So I'm feeling good. I'm just trying to build on every training session I get under my belt, and every game, every minute I get under my belt, I'm trying to build on that.
"That [cork] was actually from my second carry. There was a little cork in there. Run that off, it wasn't ideal. But nothing bad, a bit of wear and tear."