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After starring in his first match for more than six months, Cronulla playmaker Matt Moylan declared he was more confident in his body than he has been for several seasons.

Playing the five-eighth role Sharks coach John Morris has earmarked him for this season, Moylan had a hand in both of his side’s tries as they took an early 12-0 lead against Canterbury.

The Bulldogs fought back to win 16-12 but Moylan was pleased with his 60 minute stint and is now looking forward to the opening round trip to Newcastle in two weeks.

“It has been a while so it was good to get out there and get a hit-out,” Moylan said. “That is a start there and I have just got to build on the back of that.”

The match was the former NSW Origin representative’s first since tearing his hamstring in the round 15 loss to Penrith on August 21.

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It was his third stint on the sidelines in a frustrating 2020 season in which he managed only eight matches but Moylan now believes the injuries are behind him.

“I am probably more confident now than I was last year and the back end of the year before to be honest,” he said.

“I started before the pre-season and did a lot of work. I have just got to keep on top of it and keep working hard on everything I have done so far.”

Moylan was once considered one of the NRL’s leading fullbacks but he has played five-eighth at Origin level and was comfortable in the role on Saturday night.

He combined with fullback Will Kennedy to create two tries for winger Ronaldo Mulitalo in the first half. 

“I have been training there all pre-season so it was just good to finally get a hit-out and the combinations will come,” he said. “It is something we have been working hard on and that will come with more games.

“Now we have got that out of the way we are building for round one and the excitement grows from there. 

“I was pretty excited to be playing tonight. We have done so much work during the pre-season so I was pretty confident in what we have done. I just wanted to go out there and find my rythym.”