After 'going the long way', ACT Brumbies scrumhalf Nic White is eager to celebrate his 100th Super Rugby game with victory.
White will bring up the milestone against the NSW Waratahs, over a decade since the Eastwood product was bashed around the park on debut against the Reds at Suncorp in 2011.
He was quick to credit the Brumbies for his development, having returned in 2022 following stints in France and England.
“It feels good," White told reporters earlier in the week.
“I’ve gone the long way around to get there with France, England and back. It’s pretty special for Steve (Larkham) to have given me my first, 50th and now the 100th, I think that’s pretty special.
“This club means a hell of a lot to me. It was always in the back of my mind to get back to Canberra and to the Brumbies. I was very fortunate enough to get the opportunity to come back and I’m just relishing it at the moment.
“This will hopefully be another good milestone but first and foremost we have a job to do. Put that on the back burner until after the game.
There are parallels throughout his first and 100th cap, both handed to him by Stephen Larkham.
Like his debut, White will feature off the bench despite his stature as the Wallabies incumbent.
It comes after a brutal 2022 for the 32-year-old, with Larkham easing White and fellow halves partner Noah Lolesio back into action after they missed the trials.
“Whitey had to be rested through the preseason trial games and Noah didn’t get any minutes in the trial games either, so we are just looking for that combination to start the game,” he said.
White has noticed the increased attention around the game in the build-up to Friday's opener.
From a storyline perspective, the off-season was near non-existent from the confirmation of Super Rugby's future to the hiring of Eddie Jones as Wallabies coach.
The Brumbies will be looking to start on a strong note, with a healthy crowd expected at Allianz Stadium for the Waratahs' first game back at the ground.
“There’s a lot of anticipation around this year, obviously huge World Cup year. There just seems to be a really good and big feel about this year and the opening round,” White believes.
“It should be a cracker up there in Sydney with a good crowd. The buzz at the end of pre-season is usually pretty good but this year just feels a little special.
“I think it’s because of the year it is, maybe Eddie (Jones) coming in, it feels like a clean slate for everyone and there’s a little bit of uncertainty about which Aussie sides will do well so it’s all there to grab and we’ve been playing nicely.”