Most debutants can't wait to belt out their first rendition of the club victory song, but for Pete Samu that moment can wait.
Because his first instinct at full-time of Gungahlin's 36-26 John I Dent Cup win over Tuggeranong at Viking Park on Saturday was to jump the fence to see his baby boy Grayson.
"That's always my post-game, to go and see the little one," Samu said.
"He's growing pretty quick, he's been good. I'm gutted I missed out on the song but hopefully there's a few more to come."
The 29-year-old's Eagles debut doubled as his comeback from a knee injury which kept him out of the Super Rugby AU decider and the entire Trans-Tasman competition.
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Samu was overlooked for Dave Rennie's Wallabies squad having spent the past two months on the sidelines.
But he showed glimpses of his devastating best in a 53-minute stint for the Eagles, enough to suggest a late call-up during a gruelling Test campaign would not be beyond him.
"If the call comes, it comes," Samu said.
"I'm never going to say no, but my focus is trying to get some game time with the Eagles at this point.
"My knee pulled up pretty good, I think it was just my lungs that took a beating out there today which is always good for the first game back."
A win over Tuggeranong at Viking Park means the Eagles now have their hands on the Bob Hitchcock Territory Shield, which they will defend at home games at Nicholls Enclosed Oval.
Tuggeranong had held the shield since 2019.
Eagles winger Corey Toole was at his scintillating best, turning the Vikings defence inside out in a 95-metre effort to set up Tom Haddad's math-sealing try.
"They've got some x-factor out there. Corey Toole opens it up for the try to seal the game. It's good to see those boys having a crack," Samu said.
Meanwhile, the Queanbeyan Whites remain within reach of the top four following a 22-5 win over the Canberra Royals at Campese Field, while Wests secured a 31-29 thriller against Uni-Norths.
AT A GLANCE
John I Dent Cup round 10: GUNGAHLIN EAGLES 36 (Jamie Mazzarol-Kotz 2, Tamati Ioane 2, Brendon Taueki, Tom Haddad tries; Haddad 3 conversions) bt TUGGERANONG VIKINGS 26 (Kichie Navuso 2, Sione Mau, Joshua Southwell-Nobbs tries; Jack Evenden 3 conversions) at Viking Park.
QUEANBEYAN WHITES 22 (Tony Alofipo, Junior Tupou, Isaac Seeto, Justin Sikimeti tries; Liam Richman conversion) bt CANBERRA ROYALS 5 (Ethan Rokorua try) at Campese Field.
WESTS LIONS 31 (Pilliu Tavake 2, Darcy Eason, Deon Evans-Ao, Jireh Tiumalu tries; Declan Meredith 3 conversions) bt UNI-NORTHS OWLS 29 (Andrew Whittle 2, Byron Hollingworth, Joshua Vainikolo tries; Jordan Thompson 3 conversions; Thompson penalty) at ANU North Oval.
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