Nic White admits he was out of his depth the first time he led the ACT Brumbies onto the park.
Ben Mowen was away on Wallabies duties, leaving a chirpy young scrumhalf to take the reins as club captain for a clash with Melbourne.
What followed was a Brumbies carve-up on home soil, and now White is hoping to repeat the dose when he takes the captaincy reins eight years later.
White becomes the Brumbies' third captain in as many games when he leads the side against the Western Force at Canberra Stadium on Friday.
Regular skipper Allan Alaalatoa misses the clash through suspension, while vice-captain Tom Cusack will watch from the sidelines with a shoulder injury.
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Now White has emerged as the natural choice as the club looks to regain its place on top of the Super Rugby AU ladder.
"I think I was 22 the first time I did it, so I was a little out of my depth," White said.
"I feel pretty comfortable now within that leadership role. I'm just excited. Not too much changes for me, nothing really. It's a huge honour for me and where they see me at the moment, it's exciting and something I'm proud of.
"It's been a while, it's been a full circle. When the opportunity came up to come home, to get back into this position, I wouldn't have believed it if someone said that to me two years ago.
"Just really excited and very honoured I've been trusted with the job. You just run out first, not much changes for me. It's just that belief they've shown in me, it's something I want to repay [on Friday] night and going forward."
Friday night marks the Brumbies' final home game of the Super Rugby AU regular season before road trips to Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne.
It also marks the end of a long-awaited return to action after the Brumbies were left to stew on a last-gasp loss to the Queensland Reds in round four.
Brumbies coach Dan McKellar gave his troops time away from rugby during a bye week last week but White admits it was hard to brush off the pain of a thrilling defeat.
The Reds have now leapfrogged the Brumbies into first on the competition ladder, with the top-ranked team at season's end to host the grand final.
It adds fuel to the fire as the Brumbies reset at the midway point of the campaign with a point to prove against the Force.
"After a win it's easy to get away from rugby, but after a close loss like that you think about the what ifs," White said.
"We had some time off, time to get away, but I can almost guarantee you most guys had it in the back of their minds and are pretty keen to get back and get stuck into it.
"No one likes to go into a bye week after a loss. A lot of [areas in] that game that we put ourselves into trouble is stuff we can work on and we have for the past two weeks.
"Guys have probably stewed on it, so they've been waiting for an opportunity to get out and right some wrongs.
"It's hard going into a bye week after a loss because you've got to stew on that for a while, and guys are in there ready to go. Come [Friday] night, they'll certainly be champing at the bit."
SUPER RUGBY AU ROUND SIX
Friday: ACT Brumbies v Western Force at Canberra Stadium, 7.45pm. Broadcast: Live on Stan Sport. Tickets from Ticketek.
ACT Brumbies squad: 1. Harry Lloyd, 2. Folau Fainga'a, 3. James Slipper, 4. Darcy Swain, 5. Cadeyrn Neville, 6. Rob Valetini, 7. Jahrome Brown, 8. Pete Samu, 9. Nic White (C), 10. Noah Lolesio, 11. Mack Hansen, 12. Irae Simone, 13. Len Ikitau, 14. Andy Muirhead, 15. Tom Banks. Replacements: 16. Lachlan Lonergan, 17. Fred Kaihea, 18. Sefo Kautai, 19. James Tucker, 20. Rory Scott, 21. Ryan Lonergan, 22. Reesjan Pasitoa, 23. Issak Fines-Leleiwasa.
Western Force squad: 1.Tom Robertson, 2. Feleti Kaitu'u, 3. Greg Holmes, 4. Jeremy Thrush, 5. Sitaleki Timani, 6. Fergus Lee Warner, 7. Kane Koteka, 8. Brynard Stander (c), 9. Tomas Cubelli, 10. Jack McIntrye, 11. Marcel Brache, 12. Henry Taefu, 13. Tevita Kuridrani, 14. Byron Ralston, 15. Jack McGregor. Replacements: 16. Jack Winchester, 17. Angus Wagner, 18. Santiago Medrano, 19. Ryan McCauley, 20. Tim Anstee, 21. Ian Prior, 22. Jono Lance, 23. Jordan Olowofela.
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