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2017 Auckland 9s.

2016 NYC player of the year Max King has returned from his NRL Auckland Nines tournament with a new found drive to now make it to the next level.

King was over the moon when Coach Neil Henry read out his name to be part of the squad and as soon as he landed, he had one thought, and that was to simply take it all in.

“It was an unreal experience, it was awesome,” King said. “The professionalism I saw amongst all of the players was unbelievable.”

The 19-year-old was amazed by the speed in which the game was played and explained the differences compared to the 13-man game.

“That first game I played was so frantic. In attack you seemed to have a lot of free space and then in defence it was really tough.”

And with the time spent as part of the NRL squad, King now has the ambition to go that one step further.

“It’s definitely showed me that I’m not far away and it’s given me that drive to hopefully get a crack this year.”