By Blake Edwards
Illawarra Cutters captain Tyrone McCarthy is hopeful of lining-up against the Burleigh Bears in the Intrust Super Championship (NRL State Championship) fixture at ANZ Stadium, Olympic Park on Sunday.
The Ireland international is presently battling to overcome an quadriceps injury sustained during the warm-up against the Newtown Jets in the Preliminary Final fixture recently.
The skipper worked tirelessly after that match with medical staff working throughout the week to have him ready to face the Mt Pritchard Mounties in the Grand Final fixture on Sunday.
The Cutters defied all odds to defeat the Minor Premiers 21-20, with a field goal by halfback Drew Hutchison proving to be the difference, to secure their first Premiership.
Their upcoming Queensland Cup opponents, the Burleigh Bears, secured a tough fought 26-16 victory over the Redcliffe Dolphins to end a twelve-year Premiership drought in their respective Grand Final fixture at Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane last Sunday.
"It's a day by day process," said McCarthy.
“I am feeling positive, and as was the case last week, the medical staff are doing everything they can to get me right for Sunday's game.
"I was fortunate enough to play my debut NRL game for the St George Illawarra Dragons at ANZ Stadium, and it seems to have a good atmosphere which would be great to experience again.
"For some of these lads it may be the only time they play in front of a big crowd and on the big stage, so it is an exciting time.
"Burleigh will come ready to play, but I think we've got the team to get the job done."