He cost a reported £700,000 ($1.28 million) in transfer fees plus goodness knows how much of the team's salary cap.
Now for Sam Tomkins the time has come for him to deliver on all the hype, expectation and optimism surrounding his move to the New Zealand Warriors.
All the signs since his arrival in New Zealand are that he'll live up to that hype. He was sensational in the Auckland Nines and against the Broncos in a trial game a week after that.
But the real acid test will come on Sunday night against Parramatta and that's when Warriors fans will really discover if the biggest name in the English game can handle the NRL.
For Tomkins' part, he has handled himself well since moving Down Under at the end of last year and doesn't appear nervous. ''I'm really excited about it, it seems like I've been waiting a while for it,'' Tomkins, 24, said.
''It was a while ago that I decided that I wanted to play in the NRL and I'm happy that it's now come around. I've prepared as best as I possibly can, the training has been pretty intense and I've really enjoyed it, so I think I'll be as ready as I'll ever be.''
As Greg Inglis showed in his performance for the Rabbitohs on Thursday night, fullbacks are the stars of league these days and a team can only go so far without a decent one. It's no coincidence that the Storm, Rabbitohs, Roosters and Sea Eagles all have world-class No.1s and also no surprise that the Bulldogs are panicking about not having a replacement for Ben Barba.
With Tomkins at the club, the Warriors believe they can make that jump from a team that's failed to finish above 10th in the past two seasons.
But it will be Tomkins that so much will be reliant on, his combination with Shaun Johnson is vital, not just because it can lead to him scoring tries for himself (he scored 144 tries in 151 games for Wigan), but he also has a great skill in sucking in the opposition winger before offloading to a teammate. ''I want to play my part in this side and if that means it's me or someone else in the side scoring the tries that really doesn't matter,'' Tomkins said.
''It looks nice to get your name in the paper, but it's not what we play for, we don't play to score tries, we play to win games and competitions.''
It isn't just in New Zealand where there will be plenty of interest in how Tomkins performs, the British media has been excited about how he'll go. It's as if they're hoping Tomkins is a success so that their Super League can be regarded as being on a par with the NRL.
''I have had plenty of nice messages from people back in England wishing me well and it's good to know about that,'' Tomkins said.
''I'm still doing some work with Sky Sports on their Boots 'n' All program, so it's good that I've still got that connection back to the UK and I appreciate the support I'm getting from back home.''
Five times in the past nine years the Warriors have lost their opening game by six points and they have won just two of their past 10 games to begin the season, but they are favourites to knock over the Eels.
The story Sam Tomkins faces his acid test for New Zealand Warriors first appeared on The Age.