Queensland Maroons winger Phillip Sami is still riding on cloud nine after his late call-up into the State of Origin team on Wednesday.
The 23-year-old Gold Coast Titans star said he felt for squad mate Brenko Lee after he failed his fitness test just prior to the game at Adelaide Oval, but he was happy to get the "very late inclusion".
"It was unfortunate Brenko had to go down, but I put my hand up to come in and play on the wing there," Sami said.
"Wayne, on the bus before we got to the stadium, said 'come and see me when you go inside'... I didn't know what he was talking about... I went in to see him and he said 'you might be playing'.
"I kind of got rattled because I hadn't prepared for an Origin game the whole week, because I thought I wasn't playing... but then when Brenko went out and did his fitness test, he was no good, so then I knew I was playing.
"I had to switch my mentality to going out there and playing the hardest game of my life. I just text my missus and said 'I'm playing, tell the family'."
Sami, who played the full 80 minutes, said the game was "definitely very fast".
"I hadn't played footy for 10 weeks so it was definitely a hard game to come into... but I had fun, so it was good," Sami said.
"(The feeling running out) is hard to explain, to be honest. I think the best part was walking out. I know playing the game was obviously good.... everyone says it's the pinnacle of rugby league. I can't fault them for saying that because it's definitely tough, but for me, walking out was the best part.
"I couldn't explain the feeling. It was really good.
"It was a dream come true and to run out there with my family's name on my back was definitely something I will never forget."
Titans team mate and fellow Maroons debutant AJ Brimson said he was stoked for Sami.
"I felt a lot more comfortable out there with him playing, because he's my guy," Brimson, who has been ruled out for the remainder of the series, said.
Sami said his family were thrilled to watch him play.
"They were all just happy.... all very proud of me obviously," Sami said.
"I just said to them 'it was a bit late', but they didn't care. They were just happy I got out there and got a game."
Sami said he was happy with his performance, but there was always room for improvement.
"I tried to do my best there.... hopefully Brenko is right for next week though," Sami said.
"I thought I did okay. Just had to get out there and do my carries as wingers are supposed to do. I felt like my talk was alright.
"Obviously you've always got to work on something, so I'm sure Wayne will bring something up and I'll work on that during this week.
"It would be nice to (get another game)... but like I said, I'm just happy I got that game. But I obviously want more. I do want to play more games after that first game... we'll see what happens.
"I am very happy. It was one of the best moments of my career, to be honest.
"I just want to do it again."