St George Illawarra Dragons prop Russell Packer admits he is focused on the tasks ahead following the 50-6 win over the Wynnum-Manly Seagulls at Pinklands Oval, Redlands on Saturday.
Packer was one of several off-season recruits to make their competitive debut for the Red-and-Whites during the pre-season trial and played approximately 40 minutes of the game.
The prop admits he enjoyed the opportunity to lace-up his boots once more and use the match as a platform leading into the traditional Charity Shield fixture against the South Sydney Rabbitohs at ANZ Stadium, Olympic Park on Saturday.
“It was good to be in the red V jersey and playing with the boys,” said Packer
“We had a bit of a gathering of Dragons supporters at Wynnum-Manly Leagues Club on Friday night and the support I have had has been quite overwhelming to be honest.
“All the Red V Members and fans have been really receptive to me being at the Club after a long journey and hopefully we can do some good things this year.
“I am just looking to the Charity Shield, you never know what is around the corner so you just need to go day by day and week by week.
“Being new to the Club it is important that you appreciate the history, a lot is made of the long standing rivalries and I am really looking forward to the Charity Shield
“I suspect that we will field a really strong team and have a decent hit-out, I am already excited to lace-up the boots for next week.
“I need to prepare well, train hard, do my best and try to work my way into the team for Round 1.
“I guess I have really had one career already before that stuff happened and my mind set and attitude towards the game is a bit different now.
“I would definitely say now that I will probably enjoy things a bit more and take everything in a lot more and just live every day.
“I am just so grateful to be back.”