He has only just made his return from injury, and already there is talk that he will be heavily considered for the NSW side in the first Origin in a few weeks.

Despite that however, for Cowboys young enforcer Tariq Sims, he just wants to ensure that at this stage, he focuses on playing good footy for the Cowboys, after successfully making his return from a broken leg.

With NSW coach Ricky Stuart seeing Sims as part of the NSW core for the future, for Sims himself, he feels that his late start to the season may hinder his chances of making the first Origin.

“I’m not looking at Origin at all,” said Sims after coming through the Canberra clash unscathed.

“There’s plenty of games before Origin I to press my claims, but I can’t worry about Origin.

“(Origin) was my childhood dream, but I need to get more game time with the Cowboys and I need to get more minutes than I did (on Monday night).

“I’ve taken it in stages. When I couldn’t walk, I aimed at walking. Now that I’m playing, I will focus on playing well for the Cowboys.”

It is clear that Sims is one of the players of the future for NSW, made even more concrete by his appearance at the Blues in Waiting squad, where he found someone he could relate to, and a mentor, in former Roosters and Dragons lock, Craig Fitzgibbon.

“We exchanged numbers and every now and then I have a chat to Craig,” Sims said.

“He’s got some great advice. He’s another role model I can turn to. He played the same position as me and he’s been there and done it so to pick his brain is awesome.”

Seven months off the park is a long time, and Sims is relieved to be on the park, after his lengthy injury lay-off.

“It’s been a long road back for me, but I never lost faith,” he said.

“We have a really good coaching staff here and they helped me through the seven months that I was out.

“I was a bit anxious, I just wanted to play again and get back into the grind with the boys.

“I had to wait a whole half, so I was just pumped to get out there and it was good to get a nice early touch to get the nerves out of my system.

“The leg feels fine and I can now build from this.

“It was a fair collision with Tom Learoyd-Lahrs, he’s a monster. I think we came off equal.”

By ricky

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