After taking part in for Penrith for the primary time since he was a Yr 12 scholar, Sean O’Sullivan is ready to deputise for Nathan Cleary in spherical one of many NRL season if the star playmaker is not match.
Cleary has began contact coaching after low season shoulder surgical procedure however the Clive Churchill medal winner is not any certainty to characteristic within the season opener towards Manly on March 10.
With the composed O’Sullivan as back-up, the Panthers do not must rush Cleary.
O’Sullivan produced a powerful efficiency in Sunday’s 34-6 trial win over a younger Cronulla facet, having a hand in two tries earlier than resting for the second half.
“Nath is on his personal timeline and if he is not prepared I will be able to go,” O’Sullivan mentioned.
“If he’s prepared, I will be supporting him 100 per cent as a result of he is the most effective half within the competitors.
“It has been superior with the ability to study off him. He is had a lot time for me. We watch coaching collectively afterwards and hang around.”
Beginning in Penrith’s growth system within the below 12s, O’Sullivan made his NRL debut for the Sydney Roosters in 2018 earlier than stints with Brisbane and the Warriors.
It has been a profession of perseverance, the 23-year-old having already fought again from three ACL tears.
After taking part in 12 video games for the Warriors final 12 months earlier than a primary injury-free NRL pre-season, O’Sullivan shapes as a greater than succesful alternative for Cleary or five-eighth Jarome Luai.
“I took numerous confidence from taking part in probably the most video games in grade that I’ve performed (in 2021),” he mentioned.
“Hopefully, I can financial institution on that this 12 months and take some confidence into every time I get a shot to play NRL understanding that I will be prepared.”
Returning to the foot of the mountains has been clean.
“I’ve grown up with all these boys,” O’Sullivan mentioned.
“All of us went to highschool collectively … The bond all of us have is particular.”
Luai is one in every of many Penrith gamers with whom O’Sullivan shares a long-standing connection.
“We went to highschool collectively and we have been taking part in towards one another since we had been 12,” O’Sullivan mentioned.
“It has been good to see Romey, he is such an athletic freak.”