Growing up in Wellington, Tyrone Peachey idolised Brad Fittler.
Now, the Penrith Panthers star is one win away from celebrating a State of Origin clean-sweep with his former hero.
Peachey will again come off the bench in the third and final Origin game for the year at Suncorp Stadium on Wednesday night.
The NSW Blues already have the series wrapped up having won the first two games, but there’s still a huge amount of motivation heading into the clash in enemy territory.
The versatile Peachey has added spark each time he’s come in the previous two games and has been singled out for praise by Fittler, the Blues coach.
That’s special for the one-time Wellington Cowboys ball-boy after admiring the former NSW Origin winner while growing up.
“When I first started, I wanted to be a five-eighth like Freddy (Fittler),” Peachey said earlier this week.
“Freddy and little Presto (Campbell) were my heroes.”
While his versatility has been a curse at times and seen him struggle to nail down one position regularly at the Panthers, it’s something which made him attractive to Fittler when creating a new-look team for this year’s series.
A self-confessed “chubby” kid who “loved my food and my fizzy drinks”, Peachey started out in the forwards but his love for the halves meant he always had ball-playing ability.
“It’s helped me out with this Origin position,” he said of his versatility.
“That No.17, that utility role, every team needs one. I’m very happy and lucky to be involved in Origin.”
The match is scheduled to kick off at 8pm on Wednesday.