When Josh Addo-Carr lined up for the Australian National Anthem in last year's NRL Grand Final and noticed his family standing with pride in the crowd, he quickly became overwhelmed with sheer emotion.
Tears flowed from the 22-year-old as he stood alongside his Melbourne Storm teammates, as it marked a proud moment for the speedster after his long journey to NRL stardom.
I can't believe my name was getting tossed around to play Origin and just can't believe the last 18 months. It's been a true blessing and I'm just grateful for the opportunityJosh Addo-Carr
And when he runs out in the sky blue jersey for his State of Origin debut next Wednesday night, there is little doubt that the player touted as one of the fastest men in Rugby League will thrive under the bright lights of the Melbourne Cricket Ground with his family right behind him.
"I remember standing there and seeing my mum, dad, pop, girlfriend and my daughter and [I remembered] all the hard work we put in over the years and all the sacrifices we had to make," Addo-Carr told NSWRL.com.au.
"It was a very special moment for me and my family and when I play next week it will be no different."
Despite well and truly making his mark in the NRL last year with a scintillating 2017 season, which saw him cross for 23 tries and his blistering speed constantly on show, Addo-Carr humbly admits that he was surprised when he first heard his name thrown into Origin conversations.
But as he boasts 41 tries from 49 NRL games and has proved disciplined with the ball in hand this season, the prolific try-scorer has every reason to celebrate after earning his first NSW jumper.
"I can't believe my name was getting tossed around to play Origin and just can't believe the last 18 months. It's been a true blessing and I'm just grateful for the opportunity," he said.
"I just can't wait to run out with the boys and represent our state and our families.
"Representing your people is the biggest thing for me and I'm looking forward to it and deadest cannot wait."
Being one of four Indigenous Australian players making their Origin debut next week, Addo-Carr stands as an inspiring figure for the Aboriginal community and spoke with genuine excitement of the opportunity to represent his culture.
He will form a formidable combination with Latrell Mitchell on the left edge, while Tyrone Peachey and James Roberts round out the contingent of Indigenous representation in the NSW side.
"It just goes to show if you work hard at your dreams anything is possible" he said
"It just shows for young indigenous kids around Australia – if you work hard for what you love you can achieve anything.
"It will be a special moment for NSW and for us in the Indigenous communities."