Written by Cameron Smith
Photo by Players Voice
I consider myself lucky to have seen the development of Greg Inglis not just as a footballer, but as a person too.
I met him when he joined Melbourne as a 16- or 17-year-old and he made his debut when he’d just turned 18.
He was a boy still. Lean and lanky but with a lot of natural ability and athleticism.
That’s what caught the eye of myself and the rest of the team in the early days, that natural ability.
He had all the physical attributes. His speed, elusive running with the ball, huge leap and ability to catch the ball in the air were all at a high level at such a young age.
To watch him progress from that, with those attributes, to a player able to impose himself on all the matches he played was quite special, but not surprising.
To be able to be on the same field as him and watch him do things few other players could do was a pleasure.
All young guys who come into an NRL club are quite shy and reserved and GI was the same. But he fit in quickly.
He’s a guy that really enjoyed being around people, teammates and friends and particularly his family.
He always wanted to be around people and he’s never changed in that through the time I’ve known him. As with most people, as they get older they become more mature and he became better at speaking in front of crowds and speaking up in team meetings.
He developed his skills not only as a team member but also as a leader during his time at Melbourne.
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