It was a Sunday phone call Orange's Tabua Tuinakauvadra didn't expect.
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Standing idly by in busy shopping centre, Tuinakauvadra answered the phone and her forwards coach for the ACT Brumbies Women's rugby side, Scott Fava was on the other end of the line.
The news floored her and the emotion spilled over. She'd been named in the national 2023 Buildcorp Wallaroos squad.
"I was in the middle of Westfields and I just started crying, like 'you're serious?'," Tuinakauvadra told the Central Western Daily.
"[Fava] told me I'd been picked for the squad against Fiji and I just kept saying 'no, are you being for real?' I couldn't stop crying, the tears were everywhere."
Announced publicly on Wednesday, Tuinakauvadra joins a 32-player squad to play the Fijiana 15s for the May 20 Test in Sydney.
She'll join 10 other uncapped players also representing the green and gold for the first time.
But the story behind Tuinakauvadra's rise to the national team perhaps tops the lot, especially when you consider she only first set foot on the field with Orange Emus in 2018.
"I only decided to have a good crack at union at the start of last year when I made the Brumbies side, I thought 'I'll go with the flow, see where it goes, and get more experience playing at a higher level'," Tuinakauvadra said.
"If you knew me when I was playing netball in Orange at the time, I was my own worst enemy sometimes. But [rugby is] such a completely different environment for me, I'm learning more and more.
"I only started playing rugby when I was in Year 11 and I honestly feel like I'm getting really comfortable within myself and what I can do now. It's brought out a lot of [self] confidence."
Now in full focus mode to prove she's got what it takes to make the official Aussie side this year, Tuinakauvadra's main goals will stay (relatively) the same - attention to detail and steadiness.
The big difference will be kicking those targets up a fair few notches.
"For me, it's about achieving those one percenters and keeping that consistency; I feel like I'll just keep raising it now," she said.
And back at home in Orange, the Tuinakauvadra clan was mopping up buckets of happy tears following the big announcement.
Though perhaps one of her biggest fans is (ironically), the littlest.
"I'm just really proud of her, because she's worked hard for it [regardless of] all of the set backs she's had along the way," Tabua's younger sister, Mereoni Tuinakauvadra said.
"The small injuries here and there that have set her back just show how she can overcome anything that is thrown at her."
For Mereoni, her sister's selection has reignited her own rugby flame.
"To see her grow in this sport as a player is amazing and it's just nice to be able to watch your sister smash their goals," she said.
"Seeing her completely smash this makes me want to be a better person; and it makes me fall back in love with the sport all over again."
If she makes the official squad, a "pretty cool" highlight she envisions is travelling for matches abroad - countries like New Zealand, South Africa, and England.
With hopes to be in at number six - the blindside flanker position - for the May 20 Test match, Tuinakauvadra has full faith she'll be placed "wherever they feel" she should.
She's just stoked to be a part of it.
"It's just to keep playing good rugby consistently now, and maybe that'll open up getting to go and play overseas like some of the other girls have," she said.
"And I've gotten to know so many cool people that have been in and around rugby for ages. I felt like I was back home in Orange meeting all the 'old boys' and the 'old girls' who've been around for years.
"I feel grateful that I've gone down this path, definitely. It's just opened up so many more opportunities for myself and for what I can do in the future."
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