SAM McIntyre continues to impress the right people in the National Rugby League.
After just four first grade appearances, the Port Macquarie product earned the praise of none other than Andrew Johns during Wests Tigers' impressive 48-0 belting of Brisbane last Thursday night.
"Obviously he's one of the greats so being mentioned by him is very humbling," McIntyre said.
McIntyre ran for nearly 100 metres in just over half an hour of game time, resulting in Johns labelling the Port Macquarie Sharks junior a "really handy player; he looks like he can play a bit."
Four weeks after making his Tigers top-grade debut in a 36-20 win over North Queensland, McIntyre crossed for his first four-pointer in the NRL.
And didn't he celebrate after latching onto winger David Nofoaluma's grubber kick to touch down under the posts.
"I carried on a bit, didn't I," he said.
"I was just hoping I was onside which I was lucky enough to be and 'Nofa' put in a good kick for me so it was a good little treat.
"It's a bit of a laugh with the boys to say you're off the nudie run, but I was doing my role for the team and if I wasn't there you don't know, they could have picked it up and went the length."
It followed his first significant head knock in the top grade in the Tigers' 19-12 defeat to Penrith on July 4.
"There's honestly nothing better than playing NRL footy," he said.
"I've had a taste of everything - got a head knock, then scored a try so it's all been going well; I've enjoyed every minute of it."
The 22-year-old has provided impact off the bench for coach Michael Maguire, but he admitted the rigours of the NRL had taken some adjusting to.
Obviously he's one of the greats so being mentioned by him is very humbling.Sam McIntyre
"There are definitely no easy games in the NRL," he said.
"It's all about preparation and being ready to turn up every week, doing your job and having a hungry attitude.
"That's all we've been talking about."
McIntyre admitted the Tigers were still not the finished product and continued to work on their mental preparation.
"It's a really big thing for us - attitude - and knowing we should be one of the top teams," he said.
The Tigers face competition heavyweights Parramatta at Bankwest Stadium on Thursday night and McIntyre was looking forward to playing in front of fans again as they are gradually allowed back into venues.
"It's been a bit of a build-up," he said.
"The first week I played there weren't any fans and slowly there's been more and more and more so hopefully some of the Tigers fans can get out there Thursday night."
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