Braidon Burns has enjoyed a stellar start to life at South Sydney and after an inspirational talk from hero Greg Inglis recently the Saint Stanislaus’ College graduate grabbed his first ever NRL try on Saturday afternoon.
Burns wrapped up the Rabbitohs’ 24-18 win over Newcastle Knights late in the match, having one of the more easy finishes he is likely to have following a sweet cut-out ball from halfback Adam Reynolds.
The first try came in just his second match of top flight, after he had come on to the wing to replace Alex Johnston, who had switched to fullback following a season ending injury to Inglis.
Surgery meant the Queensland Maroons legend was unable to be there to present Burns with his first grade jersey before his debut at Manly but he appeared via video link to speak to Burns and fellow debutant Robert Jennings.
"He just credited my hard work. he's seen a lot of stuff that's gone on pre-season," Burns said.
"He just backed me, gave me confidence. Just from the way he spoke and the confidence he had in me, I drew a lot of confidence from that going into the game. Someone like Greggy, if he's sort of backing you, you've got all the confidence in the world."
And it showed on Saturday as he impressed in the six-point win over Newcastle.
As well as hearing from Inglis, another thing which has helped Burns take to life in Redfern easily is the fact the club has made him so comfortable.
The Rabbitohs flew his grandma and 14-year-old brother Dray down to Sydney for his debut against Manly.
"All the boys came over to sort of meet the family after the game and got a picture," Burns said.
"It was a real special moment for me and I think at that point everyone sort of realised how big it was to me. I had a few tears there. It meant a lot that (the players) made the effort to come up."
From start to finish then Burns' introduction to the top grade was something to treasure. Now he's there, he just wants more.
"We've got things that we value here and I've just got to keep trying to reach that and keep playing consistent and just doing my job," he said.
"I'll hopefully have a good career."