Sunshine Coast Falcons will be without their star fullback tomorrow for their game against the Mackay Cutters, as Nicho Hynes has been named to make his NRL debut for the Melbourne Storm.
Traditionally a halfback, the Storm-contracted playmaker has relished the transition to fullback for the Falcons in 2019.
Hynes will line up at fullback for the Storm against the South Sydney Rabbitohs, after Jahrome Hughes was ruled out through injury.
Originally from northern New South Wales, Hynes played for the Manly NYC team before spending two seasons with the Cutters where he played 42 Intrust Super Cup matches.
The 23-year-old joined the Falcons at the beginning of the 2019 season and has made 17 appearances where he has played fullback, halfback, centre and five-eighth.
Hynes has added another dimension for the Sunshine Coast in attack, and currently sits second in the competition for try assists with 19 from 17 appearances.
Earlier this year, Storm signed Hynes to a two-year contact after the 23-year-old impressed the club during a pre-season trial over the summer.
The Storm coaching staff were so impressed by the young gun, they invited him back to train with the NRL squad for a further two weeks, after his official train-and-trial period was completed.
Storm coach Craig Bellamy previously described Hynes as a talented kid with uncapped potential.
Earlier this year, Falcons CEO Chris Flannery described the moment they first discovered Hynes playing in the Intrust Super Cup.
“We first noticed him playing in the halves for Mackay against Norths in a TV game last year,” Flannery said.
“Our chairman, Ash Robinson, called me and asked if I was watching and what I thought of him. We liked what we saw and from then on, we kept tabs on him for the rest of the season."
Hynes is not the first Intrust Super Cup player to be offered a crack at an NRL career with the Storm, after Ryley Jacks and Tui Kamikamica were also handed their first NRL contacts with the Storm back in 2016, after impressing in a similar fashion.
The Rabbitohs will host the Storm at Central Coast Stadium tomorrow at 4pm.
The game will follow the Intrust Super Cup broadcast between the Cutters and Falcons, which kicks off at 1pm on 9Gem.
Match: Cutters v Falcons
Round 20 -
Venue: BB Print Stadium Mackay, Mackay