Benji Marshall concedes he hasn't felt as nervous before a match since his NRL debut as he prepares for his Super Rugby trial debut.
But Blues coach Sir John Kirwan says the former Kiwis and Wests Tigers playmaker has delivered "10-fold" on expectations so far.
Marshall gets to put what he has learnt from two months of pre-season training to the test when he runs out in the No.10 jersey in a trial against the Hurricanes in Masterton on Saturday.
"I'm nervous, there's no doubt about that," Marshall said on Thursday.
"I haven't been this nervous since probably my first-grade debut, but it's not like a scared nervous. It's more a not-sure-how-it's-going-to-go nervous."
Marshall said there were still aspects of rugby he was getting to grips with, like where to position himself in certain situations and even the finer points of the rules.
The 28-year-old admitted he thought the transition back to the game he last played as a teenager would have been a bit easier.
"It's so much different," he said.
"Everything I learnt in league I've had to throw out the window. It's like going back to school and learning the two-times table all over again."
Marshall's last rugby game was in 2002, when he was at school on the Gold Coast and turned out at first five-eighth for the Coolangatta-Tweed Barbarians.
A year later, he made his Wests Tigers debut and went on to spend 11 seasons, and win a premiership, with the Sydney club.
As a Kiwi, he played 27 Tests and was an influential member of New Zealand's triumphant 2008 World Cup campaign.
While there might be a few butterflies when he runs out at Memorial Park, he won't feel too heavy a burden on his shoulders.
"The coaching staff have been pretty good with not putting too much pressure of me to be man of the match, or that sort of stuff," he said.
"It's pretty much just about learning the reality of the game and what's going to happen, and getting a feel for playing."
When Marshall joined the Blues late last year, indications were that he would be used initially at fullback.
But Kirwan said Marshall had stepped into the role of five eighth, adding that he had the personality of a No.10.
Asked if he was impressed with how his marquee signing had adapted to his switch of code, Kirwan said: "I think all our hopes have come true.
"We pursued a player who we thought would deliver and he's done that 10-fold. He's really serious about this. He's done everything we've asked. We just need to put him out there."