Day by day, we take an in-depth look at every member of the 2016 Intrust Super Premiership NSW Team Of The Year. Today it's Illawarra's premiership-winning captain: Tyrone McCarthy.
Where to begin with the 28-year-old captain who led Illawarra to a maiden Intrust Super Premiership NSW and NRL Intrust Super State Championship? It was a sensational year for the Irish international.
Following a stint with Hull FC last year, McCarthy arrived in Wollongong to be reunited with coach Jason Demetriou, whom he won the NRL Intrust Super State Championship alongside with the Northern Pride in 2014. After Demetriou handed him the captaincy in the second half of this season, McCarthy took his game to a level that earned him an NRL debut in Round 20.
McCarthy isn't the largest of forwards in the competition, but what he may lack in size he makes up for in determination and will; in total, the captain was second in hit-ups (216) for Illawarra and third in tackles (658) and metres after contact (730 metres). His most impressive performance, however, came in the grand final, which he played through the pain of a torn quad to lead his side to a one-point victory.
Dangerous when skirting down the left fringe in attack, McCarthy added another dimension to the Cutters’ forward play in the back half of the season. He can also be punishing in defence and was a certain starter in the Team Of The Year's second row.