Twenty-year-old Jake Mamo has described the honour of receiving the NSW under 20s Player of the Year at a gala NSW Rugby League awards ceremony as a standout moment in his eminent 2014 season.
And that’s quite a claim, taking into consideration the success he’s had in his break-through year.
This season’s haul adds to a long list of achievements earned by the emerging Knight during his short career including the Brian Carlson Club- Andrew Johns Medal awarded to the best under 17s player, the 2013 Knights NYC Player of the Year and most recently he was named in the 2014 NYC Team of the Year.
“There’s definitely a few highlights but I think this one takes the cake,” he told Knights TV after receiving the accolade.
“It’s been quite a good year for myself so I’ve been pretty proud of it,” he said.
The experience of attending the high-profile awards night will also be a memorable moment for the young Knight.
“When I arrived, I didn’t know what to expect," he said.
“We got there and it was a really beautiful venue and the entire State of Origin team was there, so I got to mingle with a couple of them, it was a good experience.”
“I was happy to win the award…it was a really big night and really exciting."
Mamo starred in the NSW Origin side’s 30-8 victory over Queensland in May with his attention grabbing speed and skill on the wing earning him the prestigious Darren Lockyer Medal for his Man of the Match performance.
“We had a week in camp before that game and went into it pretty confident,” Mamo reflected.
“I ended up scoring three tries outside Sione, so he had a big hand in all of those and we ended up coming away with the win so it was good for NSW.
After a blockbuster season playing seven games in first grade, Mamo’s enthusiasm remains as high as ever as he returns to the ranks of NYC for the side’s first game of the finals series.
“I’m really excited to play this week, I missed the game last week against the Dragons,” he said.
“We’ll go into this game with quite a different side and they will too, so we can’t really take much from last week’s game, but we’ll be fielding our strongest team and we’ll play how we know how to play and hopefully come away with the win.
“We’ll play our usual game with the forwards working hard and the backs working off the back of that, and hopefully we can get away with the win.”
Mamo will be joined by under 20s NRL graduates Joe Tapine and Sione Mata’utia who will no doubt add strike power to the already strong NYC team.
“They will definitely be a big boost to the side,” Mamo said.
“Sione is an outstanding player as is Joe, hopefully they can get all the boys to rally round them, work as hard as they can see how we go in the end.”