nib Newcastle Knights forward Sam Mataora said it was an honour to represent his country in the Pacific Tests at Campbelltown on the weekend.
On his recent return from injury, the reserve grade regular was given the nod for selection in the Cook Islands team who were defeated by Papua New Guinea 32-22 on Saturday.
“It was an awesome atmosphere, lucky enough to be in the Test but it would have been better if we’d gotten the win,” commented Mataora.
The 26-year-old said he was pleased to get approximately 50 minutes in the forward pack.
“I was a bit rusty, a bit slow at the start but after that I got into it and then picked up the game pace,” explained Mataora.
The Knights forward says it’s been a career highlight to put on the Cook Islands jersey.
“It was an honour and a blessing to represent my country where I was born, so it was good.”
In other matches, England defeated Samoa 30-10 while Tonga upset Fiji 26-24.