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DEBUTANT WATCH | Starling's Hard-Work Rewarded With Debut

Ahead of Round 25 of the NRL Telstra Premiership, one Intrust Super Premiership star has been named to make his first NRL appearance. runs the eye over Tom Starling.

Tom Starling 

Club: Newcastle Knights
Position: Hooker
Age: 20
Intrust Super Premiership games played: 8
Representative honours: New South Wales Under 18's 2016

Tom Starling is a true testament to the old cliche of 'hard work pays off'. After starting the 2018 season in the Knights Jersey Flegg side, Starling has played just eight games in the Intrust Super Premiership and will now make his first-grade debut in the Knights last game of the season. 

Named in jersey No.17, the hard-working Hooker has been a shining light in a rather disappointing season for the Knights second-tier side, averaging just under 30 tackles a game and recording three line-breaks. 

Working tirelessly on either side of the ball, Starling caught the eye of many when he starred for the Knights SG Ball side in 2016, where he recording six tries, 10 try-assists, and 64 tackle-breaks in just nine appearances. 

The 20-year-old will looking to make the most of his opportunity when the Knights host the Dragons at McDonald Jones Stadium on Saturday afternoon. 

2018 Debutants

• Sam Cook – Warriors (Round 1 v South Sydney Rabbitohs)*

• Adam Doueihi – North Sydney Bears, South Sydney Rabbitohs (Round 2 v Penrith Panthers)

• Christian Crichton – Penrith Panthers (Round 3 v Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs)

• Wayde Egan – Penrith Panthers (Round 4 v North Queensland Cowboys)

• Kurt Dillon – Newtown Jets, Cronulla-Sutherland-Sharks (Round 6 v St. George Illawarra Dragons)

• Kaide Ellis – Penrith Panthers (Round 6 v Gold Coast Titans)

• Taniela Paseka – Blacktown Workers Sea Eagles, Manly Warringah Sea Eagles (Round 6 v Wests Tigers)

• Jack Hethrington – Penrith Panthers (Round 7 v Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks)

• Rhyse Martin – Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs (Round 9 v Brisbane Broncos)

• Reece Robson – St. George Illawarra Dragons (Round 9 v Melbourne Storm)

• Jarome Luai – Penrith Panthers (Round 10 v Newcastle Knights)

• Renouf To'Omaga – Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs (Round 10 v Parramatta Eels)

• Tom Wright – Blacktown Workers Sea Eagles, Manly Warringah Sea Eagles (Round 10 v Brisbane Broncos)

• Zac Lomax – St. George Illawarra Dragons (Round 10 v South Sydney Rabbitohs)

• Jack Williams – Newtown Jets, Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks (Round 10 v Canberra Raiders)

• Marata Niukore – Wentworthville Magpies, Parramatta Eels (Round 11 v Warriors)

• Matt Ikuvalu – Wyong Roos, Sydney Roosters (Round 13 v Wests Tigers)

• Reed Mahoney - Wentworthville Magpies, Parramatta Eels (Round 14 v North Queensland Cowboys)

• Manase Fainu - Blacktown Workers Sea Eagles, Manly Warringah Sea Eagles (Round 16 v Penrith Panthers)

• Lachlan Lewis - Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs (Round 16 v Newcastle Knights)

• Ofahiki Ogden - Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs (Round 16 v Newcastle Knights)

• Darren Nicholls - St George Illawarra Dragons (Round 17 v Melbourne Storm)

• Nick Meaney - Newcastle Knights (Round 18 v Parramatta Eels)

• Caleb Aekins - Penrith Panthers (Round 18 v New Zealand Warriors)

• Sean O'Sullivan - Sydney Roosters (Round 18 v Gold Coast Titans)

• Paul Momirovski - Sydney Roosters (Round 18 v Gold Coast Titans)

• Poasa Faamausili - Sydney Roosters (Round 18 v Gold Coast Titans)

• Jack Murchie - Canberra Raiders (Round 19 v Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks)

• Jordan Pereira - St. George Illawarra Dragons (Round 19 v North Queensland Cowboys)

• Jaeman Salmon - Parramatta Eels (Round 21 v Gold Coast Titans)

• Pasame Saulo - Newcastle Knights (Round 22 v New Zealand Warriors)

• Mawene Hiroti - South Sydney Rabbitohs (Round 23 v Brisbane Broncos)

• Oregon Kaufusi - Parramatta Eels (Round 23 v Melbourne Storm)

• Emre Guler - Canberra Raiders (Round 23 v Sydney Roosters)

• Kyle Flanagan - Newtown Jets, Cronulla Sharks (Round 24 v Newcastle Knights)

• Tom Starling - Newcastle Knights (Round 24 v St George Illawarra Dragons)**

*Finished 2017 season in the Intrust Super Premiership NSW

**Named to debut in Round 2