Luke Lewis admits replacing an injured Todd Carney at five-eighth wasn’t exactly how he’d envisaged his NRL comeback for cellar-dwellers Cronulla, but he’s just happy to be playing footy again.
With Carney still recovering from a hamstring strain, Lewis will take over playmaking duties for the Sharks’ clash with Parramatta at Pirtek Stadium on Monday.
The Test forward hasn’t played since undergoing a shoulder reconstruction after crashing into advertising hoardings during Australia’s triumphant World Cup campaign last November in England.
“I’ve done everything I can on the training park in getting fit and getting ready to go, so when it comes Monday night I’m ready to rock ‘n roll,” Lewis told AAP on Wednesday.
Lewis said his extended break on the sideline had helped put his NRL career into perspective.
“I’ve sort of changed a lot of ways of thinking now, I just take each day as it comes,” the 30-year-old said.
“Mate, if I came back and had to play front row or had to come off the bench or do whatever, I’d just do it.
“It’s disappointing that I missed the start of the season, but at the end of the day we’ve still got 17 games and fingers crossed I can enjoy those next 17 rounds and just have some fun playing footy.”
The NSW back-rower’s return couldn’t be better timed, with the opening State of Origin match just three weeks away. And Lewis is keen to get back in the fold.
“It’s always on your mind; you love nothing more than playing for NSW,” he added.
“To have that opportunity to put the Blues jersey on again would be awesome, especially after missing a few games.
“But whatever they think’s right for NSW, we’ll all be happy for.
“There’s nothing I can do now except get ready for the game on Monday and hopefully put my best foot forward there and fingers crossed I get the opportunity and I take that as well if I do get the chance.”