Competition - Intrust Super Premiership Round - Round 03 Teams - Newcastle Knights V Mounties - 19th of March 2016 Venue - Hunter Stadium, Broadmeadow, Newcastle NSW Photographer - Paul Barkley

Phythian geared for first grade debut

Dylan Phythian is set to make his NRL debut for the Newcastle Knights on Sunday afternoon at Hunter Stadium.

The recently turned 21-year-old was informed by the coaching staff at the beginning of the week of the possibility of his maiden first grade match.

Phythian’s first involvement with the Knights came through former head coach Rick Stone, when the then teenager was playing for the Belmont South Rabbitohs.

This season he has made a positive contribution to the Reserve Grade side, playing predominantly at fullback.

“I have had a few games with reserve grade and a bit of a bumpy season with injury,” he said.

The Newcastle local has recovered from those setbacks and has worked hard to earn his call-up.

Away from the football field, Phythian works as a telecommunications technician working on the NBN program.

“Monday night I was at Maitland working overtime,” he said.

“(Craig) Smithy gave me a call and said 'take the week off work because you’re a chance of playing this weekend'.

“My boss told me congratulations, good luck and have fun.”

Tuesday was his first session training with the NRL squad.

“It hasn’t really hit me yet. I will probably wake up on Sunday with a few nerves,” he said.

“It’s a dream come true, especially with the injuries I’ve had.”

Phythian is the eleventh player at the Club to make an NRL debut this season.