If you were to tell Sydney Shire kid Nicolas Olsen six months ago that he would be the first Australian to venture to the gulf nation of Kuwait to play professionally, he'd say you were pulling his leg.
Olsen chose the latter and moved his way back into the NPL, a setting he knew he could dominate in; and he is glad he did. The 23 year-old believed rejoining the Sutherland Sharks was the decision that was a turning point in his young career.
"The most valuable lesson that i've learned is the importance of finding a club where you feel most comfortable," said Olsen.
"Wherever you feel comfortable you will play your best football and the opportunities will follow.
"I had my whole youth development (at Sutherland Sharks) and the returning just felt right. But ultimately I think it was just a shift in my mentality.
"Coming into the season after a tough few years with some dark times I felt a sense of freedom returning to that environment."
Olsen joined the Sharks in the middle of the 2018 NPL NSW season as they were fighting in mid-table. In eleven matches he hit the back of the net six times.
Before he new it, suitors from overseas were calling.
"Four days before New Years my agent messaged me saying you have been offered to go to a club in Kuwait, you will be flying out in a few days, pack your bags!" said Olsen.
"It all came so quick and i said alright let's do it! One week later I was on a plane to Kuwait."
Olsen signed a short term deal with Al-Jahra in the Kuwait Premier League, a club who were promoted to the first division in 2010 and have steadily progressed to a stable team in the competition.
"It's kind of crazy to think that i'm in Kuwait playing professional football and loving it," added Olsen.
He would have found the culture shock rather easy to deal with considering Kuwait's small population is occupied approximately 70% by expatriates from East Asia and Africa.