St George Illawarra Dragons second-rower Tyrone McCarthy has welcomed his recent spell in first-grade despite the 12-8 loss to the Brisbane Broncos at WIN Stadium, Wollongong on Thursday.
The Ireland Bloodhounds vice-captain has featured twice for the team this season and notched his first starting spot in the second-row in lieu of the suspended Tyson Frizell.
McCarthy, who joined the Red-and-Whites during the off-season, concedes he wishes his opportunity had come earlier if not for a hamstring injury earlier in the campaign but is happy to help play a role when required.
“I was really happy to get the start and get out there despite it being under the circumstance with Friz being suspended,” said McCarthy.
“They were tough conditions with the rain coming down and the fast start which saw the Broncos build a lot of pressure.
“It was a lot faster than the conditions I have been used to playing for the Illawarra Cutters this season but I felt good during my second stint on the field after a quick rest.
“The goal for me when I came out here was to get some experience playing in the NRL and it has been frustrating with the setbacks due to some injuries with my hamstring and then finding form with the Cutters.
“However, I am happy to play my role in the squad and hopefully I have shown Mary enough.”