The Bulldogs may well have found the key to their premiership success this year and it comes in the form of a player who began the 2013 season playing in the NSW Cup.

Just 12 months ago Trent Hodkinson was the second-choice halfback at Canterbury, with former player Kris Keating in the No.7 jersey.

Fast forward to September of 2014 and the Cabramatta junior has the Doggies firing on all cylinders as he prepares for one of the biggest games of his life this weekend, a preliminary final against the Penrith Panthers.

After playing a crucial role in the win against the Manly Sea Eagles on Saturday night, where he came up with one of the most important field goals of his career in golden point extra-time, to send the Bulldogs through to the preliminary final this weekend, it makes you wonder, where he gets the calmness from to perform in pressure situations.

“I’m a laid back kind of bloke and it rubs off on the footy field,” said Hodkinson.

Not bad for a bloke who wasn’t sure he’d ever play again after shoulder and knee injuries limited him to just six matches in 2012.

With a breakout year like he has had this season, what does the Origin half put his success down too.

“Having a full pre-season and getting my body right going into games has really helped me this year,” said Hodkinson.

He is 80 minutes away from the final game of the 2014 season and if called upon to come up with the crucial play, you can bank on him been the man to get the job done on Saturday night at ANZ Stadium.