Tristan Nydam is hoping to retain his place in the St Johnstone line-up for the weekend clash with Hamilton Accies.
The midfielder, on loan from Ipswich Town, enjoyed an early 19th birthday present when manager Tommy Wright handed him a belated first start in the 1-0 win over Hibs.
That followed three appearances from the bench.
The England U19 international almost capped his performance with a stunning first half strike, with a 20-yarder crashing back off the crossbar.
“It was great getting my first start,” he admitted.
“I wanted to enjoy it and I almost scored to top it off.
“I haven’t scored for Ipswich so I know adding goals to my locker is something I have to do.
“The shot that hit the bar was with my weaker foot. I just went for it and thought it was dipping in.
“I have managed to be patient. I have worked hard and the gaffer has rewarded me.
“I wasn’t match fit when I first came up in August and had been injured. So it was understandable the gaffer didn’t throw me straight in.
“Hopefully I was good enough to stay in the team for the game with Hamilton.”
Nydam believes 12 starts in the Championship have prepared him for top-flight football north of the border.
“I played under Mick McCarthy last year and he wants teams that won’t be easily beaten,” he explained.
“I’m not the tallest or the strongest so I had to prove I could play in the Championship by showing other attributes.
“He trusted me, I like a tackle and I believe this is a similar sort of league.”
The youngster is keeping a close eye on events at Ipswich, where Paul Lambert has taken charge.
The Blues are at the foot of the Championship with a key match looming with fellow strugglers Reading.
Ex-Norwich and Aston Villa manager Lambert took over from Hurst, who farmed out midfielder Nydam to McDiarmid Park earlier in the campaign.
“We have got a new manager at Ipswich and things are a bit more positive. The lads have been rejuvenated and hopefully the results will improve,” said Nydam.
“I haven’t spoken to Paul Lambert yet. That is understandable. He has more important things to handle.
“I’m sure he will get the club out of the position they are in.
“I’m surprised by what has happened because I was expecting the team to get off to a good start this season.
“There is quality and a lot of character in the dressing room so I am backing them to get out of the position they are in.”
Meanwhile, on loan Saints striker Callum Hendry has suffered an injury blow.
Perth manager Wright confirmed the 20-year-old will be out for “several weeks” after breaking a wrist playing for Brechin City in a 2-1 loss to Raith Rovers.