LIFE can't get much better for Eddie Booth.
The Maryborough Wallaroos winger is arguably in the form of his rugby league life, while off the field he is adjusting to fatherhood following the birth of his first child Amia.
"The little one is a week old now and I'm pretty happy," the proud new dad told the Chronicle.
"Things have changed a little bit, but she has given me more motivation even with my footy."
Booth's partner Sarah Law gave birth to Amia on July 2 and the 24 year old feels lucky even though he is sleeping less and changing diapers.
But come 4.30pm tomorrow, Booth's focus will be on the local derby between the Wallaroos and Hervey Bay Seagulls.
Booth was "inspirational" - according to his coach Danny Holmes - in the Wallaroos' come from behind victory against Western Suburbs in Round 11.
Standing at 175cm, the 90kg powerhouse possesses the right ingredients of strength, aggression and a quicker acceleration than many would think.
But it's his ability to read the defence and attack better, which has earned him the nickname "Count" from Holmes that sets him apart from the rest.
"He listens and performs exactly what I ask him to do," Holmes said.
"When he was playing fullback earlier in the year, he was exceptional at counting the numbers and working the middle of the ruck and right hand side when he saw an opportunity.
"His games are always consistent, but against Wests he became more involved and his work rate increased by 300%.
"As far as taking the ball up, when the ball on his side
he became a seventh running forward for us."
With fullback Daniel Gillen expected to miss tomorrow's game due to injury, Booth is likely to switch to the No.1 role, a position where he has spent plenty of time and feels he can increase his impact.
After missing last week's game against Waves Tigers due to the birth of his daughter, Booth said he was ready and willing to terrorise the Seagulls in front of what will no doubt be one of the biggest crowds at Eskdale Park this year.
"It always goes up another gear when it's a local derby," he said.
"I think it will be a tough one, but since it's at home, we've already had good luck at home this year with the crowd behind us."
But Booth knows the Wallaroos will have a real battle ahead of them to make it three wins on the trot, with the Seagulls still smarting from their loss to Isis Devils last week.
"I'll have to be on my guard," he said.
"They have some quality young players and some fast wingers which I'll have to watch out for."
Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.