Jai Arrow's decision to leave Gold Coast and join the Rabbitohs wasn't without drama but the forward's decision has been justified ahead of the biggest game of his life on Friday.
Arrow has spent the past four months back in the city he once called home but unlike his ex-teammates, he'll be running onto Suncorp Stadium one win away from a grand final with the Bunnies.
It's the furthest the 26-year-old has progressed in the playoffs in six years after the Broncos ended 2016-17 with semi-final exits.
Arrow's minutes have dropped by eight per game since sacrificing a starting spot at the Rabbitohs this year but that isn't expected to matter if the bench forward gets a chance to play in the grand final.
Rabbitohs v Sea Eagles - Preliminary Final
"I came here for a reason and that was to play in big games and I get my opportunity this week to play in the biggest game of my life," Arrow said.
"My role has changed [this year] but I've loved every minute of it. I don't want the journey to stop here so will be doing everything I can to make sure the season doesn't stop this week.
"I'll be pretty filthy if it does. Everyone will be taking it personally from here on in, the last four teams, so I want to go out there and do my job as best I can."
Wily Wayne keeping Souths relaxed for prelim clash
Arrow insists he doesn't have too much family living on the Gold Coast where the Rabbitohs have been based but has relished the opportunity to be back in familiar surrounds.
The chance to play in the first Telstra Premiership grand final in Queensland will cap a rollercoaster year, which included a suspension and $35,000 fine for breaching COVID-19 protocols at Maroons camp in July.
Arrow missed the Origin III win on the Gold Coast but said he could use past Origin build-ups as experience ahead of the preliminary final.
"I'm sure that experience will help calm the nerves," he said.
"I like to have that nervous energy, I think it gets me up more for the game.
"Origin is a fast, tough game and I'm expecting nothing less this week. They've [Manly] played some pretty quality footy over the last couple of weeks. We'll have to be on defensively.
"Obviously Wayne will say his speech and then have me firing before the game. Once I cross the line I'll be fired up."
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