It's been a comeback three months in the making, but tomorrow Ngani Laumape is set to complete his recovery and run out for the All Blacks in Sydney.
The bruising midfielder has been named on the bench in the third Bledosloe Cup Test against the Wallabies.
Laumape broke his arm in July while playing for the Hurricanes against the Crusaders in Super Rugby.
He's grateful to be back in the fold.
"I'm always trying to get better in my game, but for me it's about going out there and just having fun.
"I just love representing my family and my mum and dad," said Laumape.
Speaking to All Blacks TV, the 27-year-old opened up on his career and the crucial role his parents have played.
"Mum and Dad came from Tonga, didn't know any English but came for a better life for their kids. The only way I can repay my parents is going out there and putting my best foot forward.
"We didn't really have much growing up. I remember when I was young we worked on the farm picking asparagus and peas and courgettes.
"I used to hate school holidays because I had to work on the farm, picking peas."
However, working with the crops didn't cultivate an appreciation for the vegetables.
"I'm still angry at those peas and asparagus. You pick them and the next day they're growing twice as big and you have to cut them again. That's why I've got a sore back.
"I hated it so much I just trained, promised I'm not going back to work on those farms."
The Palmerston North-born back was a talented sportsman growing up, so much so the Warriors took him in.
He played for the NRL side between 2013 and 2015 before a switch to rugby union and the Hurricanes.
Since then, he's brought up 13 caps for the All Blacks but missing out on last year's World Cup was a huge blow.
Laumape responded with strong performances in Super Rugby, only to be stopped by his arm injury in July.
"Hopefully, I get out there and get an opportunity, but yeah, it's been tough watching from the sidelines."
The midfielder said he didn't know how the injury would end up and found his recovery process frustrating.
Never the less, support from his family and partner played a crucial role in his comeback.
"She helped me get through those days where it was tough. I give it all to my partner and the man above.
"My partner takes care of things that people don't see. I'm a true believer if you have a happy home everything else will take care of itself.
"Hopefully, I can put my kids in a good position so when they grow up they can be whatever they want to be," he said.