It's been a tough year trying to get on the field for Cody Hodge, but now the star centre has been given the opportunity of a lifetime.
The 23-year-old heads to Sydney next week after securing a train-and-trial deal with NRL grand finalists South Sydney.
It is believed there are two spots left on the 30-man roster for the Rabbitohs.
He starts training with the club on November 8 and a decision is expected to be made early in the new year.
It's an exciting prospect for the Southcity product.
"I've got a train-and-trial deal until after Christmas and then we will see what happens," Hodge said.
"There's a squad of forty so there's probably 10 people in the same boat as me.
"It's very exciting so I can't wait to get up there, try my best and hopefully get one of those spots."
After returning to Wagga two years ago after a stint in Canberra, the Southcity product is looking to give it his all.
"I think there are two spots in the top 30 and I'm not sure about the development contracts, they might be all taken, so the odds aren't really there but hopefully I can jag one of them," Hodge said.
"I'm thereabouts so I just have to put my best foot forward."
After excelling in Riverina's Country Championships campaign, Hodge scored hat-tricks in his first three games of the season for the Bulls before injury struck.
He missed a full round of the season after fracturing his elbow against Tumut in round five and re-injured his ankle.
It was to be the last game of the season with COVID cutting short any chance to return.
Hodge is hoping his injury problems are behind him.
"Hopefully I've got all the injuries out of the way this year and there is no more of them," he said.
"It was a good season - the three and half games I got to play. I really enjoyed it but fingers crossed it all goes to plan."
As much as he enjoyed another with the Bulls, with such a big opportunity on the line Hodge didn't hesitate to start packing his bags.
"I'd be mad not to go really," he said.
"I didn't second guess anything but it was more asking how it was going to work out and planning on how to get there.
"It was a yes pretty much straight away."
Regardless of how the next few months pan out, the 23-year-old will remain in Sydney for next season.
It leaves another big hole for the Bulls to fill after captain-coach Nathan Rose linked with Gundagai.
"If it doesn't work out with the top squad hopefully I can play in the NSW Cup side," Hodge said.'
"I will definitely be there for the year."