NEW Giants signing Brad Drew couldn't wait for today to arrive.
Ever since landing in this country three weeks ago, the 29-year-old Australian hooker has been itching to meet his new teammates.
He's already working out on a regular basis with compatriots Chris Nero and Ben Roarty in the Giants gym.
But today was the day Drew regards as highly significant.
"When I agreed to sign from Canberra Raiders about four months ago, all I wanted to do was get here," said Drew.
"And as soon as I got here, I began counting the days down to the start of pre-season training.
"No doubt as soon as that starts I'll begin counting down to the start of the season!
"But today really will be very special for me.
"Over the past few months I've been watching videos of Giants matches and putting names to all the faces.
"It'll be good meeting all the players at long last."
Unfortunately, Drew will have to wait a little longer to meet the whole squad.
Not arriving until midweek will be Australians James Evans and Jim Gannon, who have been back home visiting family.
And Stanley Gene will return the following week.
He has spent much of the off-season with the Papua New Guinea national squad, and was one of the Kumuls' stars in the Test against Tri-Nations kings Australia back in October.
The versatile 30-year-old is now visiting friends and relatives in PNG and will be back before the end of next week.
And, finally, Australian Test centre Michael De Vere will touch down on Jaunary 2, although Drew has met him on the Aussie NRL competitive field on numerous occasions over the years.
Head coach Jon Sharp will obviously be overseeing the start of training after completing his duties as Great Britain assistant coach for the Tri-Nations series.
And admits he can't wait.
"I really enjoyed coming back to the Galpharm on a daily basis last week," said Sharp.
"I've already spoken to a lot of the boys on an individual basis and they're really enthusiastic about the weeks ahead.
"They've all had weights programmes to follow while they've been away, and I'm delighted to say that they all appear to have been following them strictly.
"The boys who are still away have also been given their programmes, and I'm sure they won't have neglected their duties back at home."
Those back in for pre-season training today were Eorl Crabtree, Stuart Donlan, Brad Drew, Bolu Fagborun, Jon Grayshon, Thomas Hemingway, Paul Jackson, Stuart Jones, Paul March, Iain Morrison, Chris Nero, Hefin O'Hare, Sean Penkywicz, Paul Reilly, Ben Roarty, Mick Slicker, Paul Smith, Marcus St Hilaire, Jason Southwell, Chris Thorman and Paul White.