As only supercoach Craig Bellamy could, he kept Ryley Jacks' debut for the Melbourne Storm a secret right up until kick-off in their season-opening win over the Canterbury Bulldogs on Friday night.
It may have been considered a gamble to debut the 24-year-old five-eighth against a physical Bulldogs pack in front of a hostile Belmore crowd.
However, from building houses to training the house down in the pre-season, the former Brisbane carpenter handled the occasion as well as he laid bricks to guide the Storm to a gutsy 12-6 victory.
While he's considered a temporary solution until Billy Slater returns and Cameron Munster moves to the halves on a permanent basis, Jacks isn't ready to relinquish his spot after patiently bidding his time.
“I'm treating it like it's my spot now,” Jacks said. “I just have to make the most of however many games I get to start the year off.
“I didn't really care what people were saying or who was favourite to get that spot. I just put my head down and trained as hard as I can in pre-season.
“I wasn't thinking I'd get my shot Round 1. Maybe during the year sometime but I've been training really well the last three weeks and trialling well so Craig (Bellamy) went with me last minute.”