https://www.foxsports.com.au/nrl/nrl-pr ... b07af12359
How Storm speed demon Josh Addo-Carr is getting faster as he pushes for NSW selection in 2018
JOSH Addo-Carr is already the fastest man in the NRL.
But in a scary revelation for every winger who has to mark him, he believes he can get even faster and is putting in the hard yards to make it happen.
The 22-year-old was one of the buys of the year in 2017, scoring 23 tries, including a grand final double as the Storm romped to the premiership.
It was a breakout year that sparked calls for the speed demon to be considered for World Cup selection, and while that was always a long shot he has already been identified as a potential bolter for NSW in Brad Fittler’s first Origin campaign as coach.
Addo-Carr admits he was taken by surprise when Fittler named him as one of four players on the fringe of selection for a Blues side struggling to break Queensland’s stranglehold on the shield.
Along with his elevation to the Storm’s Emerging Leaders program, the potential of wearing a sky blue jersey has turbo-charged Addo-Carr’s pre-season. He told foxsports.com.au he was working with Melbourne conditioner and former Olympic sprinter Adam Basil to make his biggest weapon even more lethal.
“He’s been teaching us some stuff that will hopefully help me get faster,” Addo-Carr said.
“Technique-wise and learning how to run properly and how to produce force I suppose. I’m just trying to improve my technique and try to get faster.”
When you’re on the field you just run, you don’t think about that stuff. Even now at the Storm I just run and try to get there as fast as I can, so it’s just natural I suppose.
“You can work on acceleration and repeat efforts and that kind of thing.
“I’d like to think it’d be a bit scary for my opponents if I could get faster. That’s a good thing when other players are worried about you.”
And why wouldn’t they be when he is already capable of making defenders look silly when he turns on the afterburners.
With points at a premium in tense Origin encounters, you can understand why Fittler would carefully consider bringing him into a side that is certain to have a different look in 2018.
Fittler coached Addo-Carr for the first time last year, when he picked him on the flank for the City Origin side, with the winger impressed by the coach’s ability to get his side tuned up to play well in a short training camp.
“Me and Freddy get on really well,” Addo-Carr said.
met him in City camp and he’s a good guy to be around. When I found out he considered me a bolter, I was pretty surprised but it’s good. If I keep playing good footy for the Storm hopefully other opportunities will come up.
“I’m not really worried about it, I’m just going to keep working hard, keep trying, and if an opportunity comes up hopefully I can take it with both hands.”
For now, Addo-Carr is keeping his feet firmly planted on the ground, with the renowned brutality of a Storm pre-season his only focus.
Having stepped up into the Emerging Leaders program pioneered by former AFL star Nick Maxwell, he has more reasons than ever to burn up the training track.
“In the Storm organisation, it’s a pretty big thing,” Addo-Carr said. “The Storm are pretty big on leadership and it’s really good for myself to step up in that role.
“Hopefully I can step up into a senior leadership role one day but it’s been really good for me on and off the field, because I can take those leadership skills into my family and my community.
“It’s been really good for me and hopefully I can step up into a senior leadership role in the future.
“It’s all about being a role model to the younger players — train the way you play and hope that it filters down.”
It must be a frightening thought for opponents that Addo-Carr is prepared to work hard on a strength that already makes him virtually untouchable any time he gets into a foot race.
He says that up until this off-season he has relied on his natural instincts to jet down the sideline, with Basil making some tweaks to fully unleash the beast.