Rhiannon Byers was "speechless" when she got the call informing her she had been offered a full time Australian rugby sevens contract.
Back in January, the former Inverell Highlander and Warialda High student signed a development contract, and she found out around two months ago that contract was being upgraded, which she has now made public.
"I was very stoked when I got the phone call. I was a bit speechless for a little bit. My mum thought there was something wrong with me, I was crying but I wasn't speaking," Byers laughed.
"It was great news for my family and my local areas."
Byers said the contract offer was mainly based on her performances and effort at training.
"I was very pleased knowing what I have been doing at training, they can see something in me and that it's all paying off at training," she said.
"I'm just hoping the full time contract gives me some greater opportunities to better myself."
The training regime with the Australian side at the Australian Rugby Union headquarters at Moore Park in Sydney has been a massive step up compared to her playing days at Inverell.
From two two-hour training sessions with the Highlanders a week, to three full days as part of her development contract, and now adding a fourth day with the full time contract, it's been an extra challenge but one that Byers has enjoyed while continuing to improve her game.
"My passing and ball awareness and gameplay has improved phenomenally and will keep improving if I keep the hard work up," she said.
The 2018/19 World Series wraps up in Biarritz, France on June 15 to 16 and Byers is hoping to get the opportunity to play in that tournament.
"I don't really know too much about the selections, you just keep training and fight for spots to come. My opportunity might happen, it might now," she said.
"I'm just now training consistently for whatever opportunity might come up. If injuries come up I'm there, mentally ready and physically ready for what's to come."