Newcastle Knights’ Chris Houston is set to return to the field on Saturday to celebrate his 150th NRL game milestone after being sidelined with a knee injury for three weeks.
“I can’t wait to play,” he told the media at a press conference on Friday.
“It’s hard always watching from the sideline and I’m lucky I haven’t had to do it too much in my career.
“I’m keen to get out there tomorrow afternoon and my knee is feeling good.
“It wasn’t a big operation, it was just a little clean out.
“Once I got the swelling down, I pretty much could start training.
“The rehab guys have done a great job and it feels pretty good."
After a tough road trip last weekend, the Knights need to bounce back against an in-form Melbourne Storm.
“The Storm are a quality side and have been for a long time,” Houston said.
“They have the big three that they talk about with their forwards and (Kevin) Proctor and Will Chambers on the edges have been in great form.
“We’ll be up against it on Saturday, but we just have to work on the little things.
“Footy hasn’t changed much, we just have to work hard at the one percenters and hopefully we can get a bit of a result."
A number of players, including Jarrod Mullen (abdominal strain) and Willie Mason (sick) have been given until game day to prove their fitness.
“It’s been a long season for us and there’s blokes carrying injuries week in, week out,” Houston added.
“Wayne has done a good job getting blokes ready for most games, so we’ll see how a few boys pull up after today.”
The 29-year-old revealed his motivation for the rest of the season is about giving back to the people that support the Club.
“That’s what it’s all about, not just playing for yourself,” he said.
“It’s about giving back to the fans that come out and watch us every week.
When questioned about his enthusiasm to play in Newcastle beyond 2014, the forward made his passion and affection for the Club clear.
“I love Newcastle, I want to stay here," Houston said.
“I’ve been in Newcastle for seven years now, so hopefully in the next week or two I can sort something out.
“The logical thing is that you have to wait for a coach to be appointed, hopefully that’s done in the near future.
“I’m just waiting for that process.
“The Club has good juniors, like Beau (Scott) said the other day, and we have a decent squad here, I definitely want to be part of it in the future.”
Buy your TICKET now for the Knights v Storm match at Hunter Stadium on Saturday August 9.