The push to hand Jack Wighton a starting role for the NSW Blues is gaining momentum as the Canberra Raiders five-eighth prepares for one final audition.
One impressive outing could be enough to catapult Wighton into the No. 6 jumper for game two of the State of Origin series in Perth on June 23.
Doubts hover over Cody Walker's place in the side and Raiders coach Ricky Stuart has backed his man for the job leading into a clash with Cronulla at Canberra Stadium on Thursday night.
Blues coach Brad Fittler will name his squad for game two on Sunday to leave a host of aspirants with one more chance to press their claims - and of those there is no shortage.
Wighton, Walker, incumbent halfback Nathan Cleary. All three are jostling for spots alongside the likes of Mitchell Pearce, James Maloney and Cronulla's Chad Townsend.
But Wighton will be the first to say his focus remains on the Raiders as he takes a glass "half-full" approach, and Canberra halfback Sam Williams is ready to ride the wave of confidence the five-eighth has brought back from mixing it with the best.
"Just the confidence in his own game is the biggest thing he will take out of it. He now knows he is seen as one of the best players in the competition, and it's not just us telling him that," Williams said.
"That belief he has now earned, that's probably something he will be able to bring back to this team.
"Being around some of the more senior players within the competition and learning from some other players, that's going to put him in a really good position going forward for the rest of the season.
"It's always good to see such a big and imposing player like Jack playing with confidence.
"When he is taking the line on and breaking tackles, it's a real energy boost for everyone out there, and it also gives the spine a real boost in terms of what you're trying to achieve."
Raiders winger Jordan Rapana could sense the excitement reverberating throughout the side when Wighton returned to help Canberra to victory over the scoreless Wests Tigers last week.
Josh Papalii took that same buzz into the forward pack - but Rapana felt it most from the man inside him in Nick Cotric, another Blue desperate to hold his place for game two.
Cotric has shifted to right centre for Canberra to replace the injured Joey Leilua after neck surgery almost certainly brought an end to his season, playing inside Rapana to form a deadly combination.
"He was good [against Wests], he did an awesome job backing up, as did Jack and Papa. I'm looking forward to it. BJ [Leilua] is probably still a fair way off, so it's good to start getting some combinations with Nicky," Rapana said.
"We all know how wonderful he is in attack. They're both freaks in attack, and for both of them, the biggest part of their game is working on their defence. We kept them scoreless, so you can't ask for much more.
"He was buzzing, obviously being in that camp with the NSW Blues team, he is full of confidence, as were Jack and Papa. You could see it rub off on us and that played a big part in getting that win."