Corey Thompson arrived in Sydney for the first time midway through last season and what a rise it has been for the Queensland rookie.
"I was raised in Brisbane, spent my whole life there and it was actually the first time I've been to Sydney, when I signed with the Bulldogs, but I've loved every moment of it," he said.
Thompson joined the club midway through the 2013 season after starring for Easts in the Queensland Intrust Super Cup.
He slotted straight into the Bulldogs NSW Cup side last year and finished the year with 11 tries from 14 appearances.
With the departure of Ben Barba at the end of the 2013 season, the 24 year old was given an opportunity throughout the summer to impress Hasler and show he is capable of playing first grade footy on a consistent basis.
Well that chance was granted when he debut for the club in round one of the 2014 season and for Thompson, he credits his pre-season to why he has been given this opportunity.
“I had a good pre-season and to be given the opportunity to debut in round one has motivated me to continue to perform throughout the season,” said Thompson.
Thompson has been applying his trade for many years and for outside backs having not played NRL before their 21st birthday rarely crack first grade.
He was in the Raiders program at Souths Logan but Canberra said “thanks but no thanks’’. Then he almost signed with the Melbourne Storm but second tier salary cap restrictions curtailed the deal.
Before the Bulldogs came knocking in 2013 and gifted him another opportunity, but what came in round one of this year will be a moment he remembers for a life time.
“The family were happy. My footy was up and down in Brisbane, but to be given the opportunity I have now, is really satisfying,” said Thompson.
He is only 14 games into his NRL career and for Thompson, working under a coach like Des Hasler has really helped his game to where it is today.
“He has brought a lot to my game and I appreciate learning underneath him,” said Thompson.
Thompson has been a consistent performer this year for the Bulldogs and after last week's result he believes the side will be ready for the Cowboys.