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Chris Lewis

Before he signed a development contract with Melbourne Storm, self-confessed history nerd Chris Lewis was working as a high school history and English teacher; balancing footy training, lesson planning and late nights marking school work.

Since his move to Melbourne the balance has tipped in favour of football, but the 27-year-old often puts his English skills to good use in the Storm team room - he's pretty handy at solving a crossword.

He also fancies himself a decent Catan player.

"Christian Welch and Brandon Smith are easy beats at Catan so I missed flogging them at board games," he quipped about his time in isolation.

"I was really enjoying the cafes and trams (in Melbourne) before I was put in lockdown.

"I flew to the Sunshine Coast with my housemates and stayed at my brother's place up there. I'm a pretty serious surfer so it was good to get back in the green room and show the boys up."

Chris Lewis
Chris Lewis

For those of us still spending most of our time at home, Lewis had a few recommendations.

"I'm a bit of a history nerd, so I'd recommend the Revisionist History podcast by Malcolm Gladwell.

"Harry Potter is a classic for all ages and I've been watching the Jordan documentary as much as everyone else."

Lewis was named the Intrust Super Cup Second Rower of the Year in 2019 and a former coach once remarked that the gap between his best and worst game is very small.

While he is yet to make his first grade debut, he repped the Storm jersey at the Nines comp in Perth earlier this year and hopes his consistency on the training track will earn him game time in the NRL.

"My goals for this year were to help the Falcons win a comp and to make my debut for the Storm," he said.

"With no Q Cup this year I guess my focus has narrowed to trying to train hard and crack some NRL games.

"It was hard to keep motivated (during the break), but keeping in touch with the other boys and not wanting to let them down when the season started up kept me going."

Now back in Melbourne, Lewis said his life has changed significantly since pursuing footy full time.

"I went from living on the Sunshine Coast to freezing in Melbourne," he said, tongue-in-cheek.

"Playing rugby league full time means it's my primary concern, I don't have to worry about work, marking school work or trying to cram extra gym sessions in.

"I do miss the people I work with and getting to help kids who are looking to better themselves, but I'm so grateful for the opportunity to pursue my footy."

As for the weirdest of the many safety measures introduced at AAMI Park during the time of the coronavirus:

"Having to take our shoes off at the front door is a bit odd."