Versatile Cowboy Ben Hampton has praised the club's coaching staff for showing patience as he continues to learn his role in the team.
Hampton – recruited to the North Queensland Toyota Cowboys from the Melbourne Storm in the off-season – has played the majority of his 45-game National Rugby League career as a backline utility, but has been acting as starting hooker and Jake Granville’s backup as the team deals with a glut of injuries in that position.
“I haven’t really played that dummy-half role in my career until I came up here, and it’s been a great challenge,” Hampton said ahead of Saturday night’s important clash with the Gold Coast Titans.
“The coaching staff and my teammates have shown plenty of faith and patience in me, for which I am grateful.”
Hampton, 25, has played in all but one of the team’s 11 games this season, coming off the interchange bench all bar one occasion.
He will again provide dummy-half relief to Granville against the Titans, and will look to provide plenty of spark and energy to a team searching for some consistency in what’s been an uneven season to date.
“This time of the year – when we lose players to Origin and the like – it’s really important we’re all stepping up and for myself, it’s a great chance to perform well and in front our home fans,” Hampton said.
“It’s a fantastic test and despite the narrow loss to the Sharks, we’ve been good in Johnno’s (injured talisman Johnathan Thurston) absence in the past two matches.”