Rebels flyhalf Carter Gordon is confident the side can continue to build ahead of Super Rugby Pacific, looking to step up as a leader in 2022.
Gordon was thrust into the starting role during the Trans-Tasman season, establishing himself as their flyhalf of the future.
After a tough start against the Blues, the Rebels showed they could compete with the Kiwi teams in narrow losses to the Highlanders and Chiefs.
This has given the Melbourne-based side plenty of confidence ahead of 2022, with Gordon eager to impose his voice to help guide them around the park.
“I’m coming out of the (Trans-Tasman) season with plenty of confidence having played against the New Zealand teams,” Gordon said.
“They were a bit of step up this year but I think the way the boys are working out there in the pre-season, we’re really chasing them and coming in hot.
"Being a ten, (communicating) is something I need to master and I think I’m really putting in the work in the pre-season and making sure I’m one of the voices the boys can look to.
“It’s something I’m trying to improve on and some I’m getting used to."
Having settled into the side, Gordon's confidence has grown after a 'dream' debut season, admitting the goal remains the same.
“I was always trying to prepare myself behind the scenes and make sure I was ready to go when I was needed so I think it was obviously a shock having one game and then getting called up (to the starting side),” he added.
“I’ve tried to take it with both hands and really rip in for the team.
“The goal is to win so I’m just trying to do whatever it takes to ensure that.”
MATCHUPS: 10 major games for 2022
The Rebels are relishing the prospect of a settled Pacific campaign, forced to leave Melbourne on a couple of hours notice on numerous occasions over the past 18 months.
With a Super Round slated for AAMI Park in Round Two, the prospect of playing regular games in Melbourne excited the 20-year-old.
“It’s very really exciting, being able to stay at home and our own bed which is always good,” Gordon believes.
“It’s going to be good for our fans and to play in front of family so I’m really excited for it.”