Zac Hosking was "full steam ahead".
Coming off a pre-season with the Knights' top squad, an NRL trial against the Dragons at Maitland and set for another NSW Cup campaign, the 23-year-old lock couldn't wait to see what 2020 might bring.
Now, following the cancellation of the statewide competition in March due to coronavirus and initial uncertainty surrounding whether or not Newcastle Rugby League would go ahead, Hosking has linked back up with his junior club Central in a bid to help stay in shape for 2021.
"I didn't want any time away," Hosking said.
"It's not the same as NSW Cup, but being able to play something is better than nothing.
"You can run as much as you want to at training but you can't get any match fitness unless you're playing.
"Spending 12 months off tackling, passing and without a footy in your hands would mean you'd drop some of those skills and you'd have to re-train to get them back.
"No one really knows what it's going to look like next year because the NRL are still making decisions and that impacts squads and budgets and what contracts can be offered.
"But when that does come around and spots are up for grabs, I want to put my best foot forward this year so I'm in the best possible position to make the most of any opportunity that might arise."
The former NSW Country under-18 representative made his first grade debut at a Rowan Kelly-led Central in 2015 before helping the club's under-19 side win the grand final.
Since then Hosking has been with the Knights, first playing 20s (2016, 2017) and graduating to NSW Cup the last two seasons.
Knights coach Adam O'Brien had him training full time until Christmas and he played the opening round of reserves before the COVID-19 outbreak took hold.
"It's not until it gets taken away that you realise how much you love it and how much you miss it," Hosking said.
Hosking was approached about joining Maitland for President's Cup but returned to St John Oval and united with some of his former teammates such as Cameron Anderson, Dom Murphy and Jake Maizen.
Central coach Phil Williams says he's been "impressed by his attitude" and describes him as a "young player on the up, all he needs is a lucky break".
Hosking hopes to get the chance to play alongside his older brother Jacob.
Their father David, nicknamed 'The Mule', played a combined 78 games for South Sydney and Manly between 1987 and 1993.
Hosking, a carpenter by trade, recently bought and moved into a place at Mayfield with partner Emily.
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