JACK Murchie hopes hard work pays off as he prepares for the upcoming NRL season.
Murchie has been pushing himself hard as he gets ready for what hopefully will be a season of highlights with the Canberra Raiders in 2020.
The Milton-Ulladulla Bulldogs junior has stepped up to the challenge and is relishing the tough training program.
"It has been tough but enjoyable," Murchie said.
"It's been enjoyable because we have been pushing ourselves, working hard and getting the results."
He feels hard work in the pre-season will produce on-field dividends.
Murchie and the Raiders, at one point in the pre-season, had to leave the ACT.
Smoke from the bushfires spreading into the ACT meant the Raiders had to head up North.
"We had 10 days training up on the Sunshine Coast which gave us good and clear training conditions," he said.
They returned back to the nation's capital and are really ripping into their work.
Training started later than normal for the Raiders, as they made the grand final last year, which meant their off-season break was extended and pre-season training started later.
The 2019 grand final loss to the Sydney Roosters is working to the team's advantage.
Murchie believes the squad is more determined than ever to hold up that famous NRL trophy.
"I was not in the grand final squad but I can sense the boys are hungrier than ever to go one better," he said.
The 22-year-old Murchie has his own goals for the season and getting more NRL matches is high on his list.
Last year he only got to play one NRL match (against Manly-Warringah in round seven) and in his debut season (2018) he got two.
Murchie, who was born in Batemans Bay, will be taking on more of a middle forward role this season and looking forward to the challenge.
Attention to detail, like in defence, are some of the things Murchie has been working on.
"I still want to maintain my power running game," Murchie added.
He has bulked up for his role as a middle forward.
Last season he weighed around 103 kilograms and his weight is now 107 kilograms.
"The extra weight will help with the move into the middle and help my running game as well," he said.
"I think I am now a bit too big and slow to play out wide."
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The Raiders are blessed to have some vastly experienced overseas imports in their team.
A young player like Murchie can learn from the likes of Englishmen Elliott Whitehead and Josh Hodgson.
"I have been trying to soak up as much as I can from them,' he said.
Elliott, since he has been back, is training the house down."
Being a South Coast product, his thoughts were very much with the communities during the recent fires.
He still has family members in the Ulladulla area and said they were not harmed by the fires.