MICHAEL LAWRENCE is already being tipped as a top Super League player of the future.
And at the age of just 17, the former Newsome Panthers junior has taken a first major step to making that prediction become a reality.
He may only have played a five-minute cameo role on his debut at Warrington in last Friday’s crucial Super League clash, but in that time he displayed composure and a level of maturity way beyond his years.
And having now got that first appearance under his belt, he’s hoping it doesn’t take long before he tastes Super League action once again.
“Last Friday was awesome,” he reflected.
“When I pulled on the shirt and walked out there I got a massive adrenaline rush.
“It was really good, I enjoyed it a lot and it’s made me want more.
“It’s really whetted my appetite, and I can’t wait to get started on full-time training later this year.
“I’ve been training with the squad over the summer and that’s gone well. I’m hoping to carry on improving.
“It was a bit scary at first, I’m the first to admit that, but the first-team players have already helped me out a lot.
“Rod (Jensen) and Jammer (Jamahl Lolesi), in particular, have been great, and really keen to help me whenever they can.
“They’ve both played a lot at centre, which is where I’ve been earmarked at the Giants.
“As a young kid, I followed the Australian game really closely and wanted to be like Lockyer and Johns.
“But now I’m a centre I look up more to players in my position such as Lyon or Gasnier, players of that calibre.
“I’ve always wanted to make it at the highest level since I started playing when I was five years old.
“That dream has now become more of a reality, but I still know there’s a lot of hard work to do before I get to where I ultimately want to be.
“That match at Warrington has just made me more determined to play in Super League.”
And if Huddersfield coach Jon Sharp has anything to do with it, he will soon be getting his wish.
“I’m really excited about Michael and what he has to offer, as far as I’m concerned, he has Super League player stamped all over him,” he said.
“It’s really down to him.”