Hudson Young has left no stone unturned in a "desperate" bid to earn an NRL recall for a side destined to end a three-year finals exile that has left Ricky Stuart stunned.
Stuart admits Young found a five-week suspension for an eye gouge and a stint in NSW Cup "hard to handle" initially.
But he has been taken aback by the rookie forward's approach as he looks to redeem himself.
The return of Young will allow the Canberra Raiders coach to keep an international star on ice and ensure the Green Machine is refuelled for a finals tilt.
Young will end an 11-week hiatus and launch a finals audition from the Raiders' bench in a clash with the Manly Warringah Sea Eagles at Canberra Stadium on Sunday.
The promising 21-year-old has been backed to help fill the void left by Joe Tapine as the New Zealand international nurses a rib injury.
"It's good for Hudson to get back and get some minutes in first grade again," Stuart said.
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"It has been a fair while out for him so he will need to get a little bit of time over the next three weeks.
"I won't rush Taps back, I want to make sure when I bring him back that he is going to be 100 per cent.
"It's too important going into this part of the season now. We want him to fully recover and we're fortunate we can bring Hudson in.
"We've got our processes we run by with our preparation. The week has been pretty fluent, we have had no hiccups."
Young will come from the bench while English import Ryan Sutton slots into the starting side for the top four clash.
The Newcastle product is determined to make a statement and play a role for the Raiders in their run to September.
Young could so easily have dropped his head following a hefty ban for a forgettable moment against Canterbury.
His eye gouge on Aiden Tolman sparked a wave of controversy across the NRL and left Raiders chiefs frustrated.
But throwing in the towel is not his go. Not in his first NRL season. Not when the Raiders are primed to go deep into the finals.
Young floored his teammates with his resilience throughout the turmoil at a time when a rookie footballer could let their world crumble.
"He is young and enthusiastic, Hudson," Stuart said.
"He has been very desperate to get back. It was very hard for him to it out those five games. He is a young man who has learnt a very valuable lesson.
"When you're playing in the NRL and really enjoying your debut season, and make an error of judgement and get punished the way he did, it was hard for him to handle initially.
"He did a really good job, he just put his head down and worked really hard on the training field and kept his fitness up.
"He bought in where he could help the players out with our scrimmages and our training. He is a big part and a very valuable member of the squad.
"The way he buys into our standards and pieces of work ethic around our games is a credit to him."
The Raiders are banking on a bumper crowd for the Manly clash with a strong walk-up hoped to tip the club over the 20,000 mark in a regular season game for the first time since 2010.
Funds are being raised for Deaf Australia with the club to wear a one-off charity jersey bearing the Auslan alphabet.
And a trifecta of rugby league action could draw a few more through the gates with the club's Jersey Flegg side and NSW Cup outfit Mounties both playing curtain-raisers to the NRL clash between two finals-bound contenders.
"It should be another big crowd, that's what we're expecting," Stuart said.
"It's coming into an exciting part of the season, we have all three grades playing.
"To have a big crowd, it would be a good day for the club."
NRL ROUND 23
Sunday: Canberra Raiders v Manly Warringah Sea Eagles at Canberra Stadium, 4.05pm. Tickets from Ticketek.
Raiders squad: 1. Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad, 2. Nick Cotric, 3. Jarrod Croker, 4. Joey Leilua, 5. Jordan Rapana, 6. Jack Wighton, 7. Aidan Sezer, 8. Josh Papalii, 9. Josh Hodgson, 10. Sia Soliola, 11. John Bateman, 12. Elliott Whitehead, 13. Ryan Sutton. Interchange: 14. Bailey Simonsson, 15. Dunamis Lui, 16. Corey Horsburgh, 17. Hudson Young, 18. Sam Williams, 19. Siliva Havili, 20. Emre Guler, 21. Michael Oldfield.