Ceri Sweeney says he cannot wait to tacklie the demands of the Aviva Premiership when he kick-starts his Exeter Chiefs career next week.
Signed during the close season from Welsh outfit Cardiff Blues, the 33-year-old fly-half is one of four newcomers Chiefs head coach Rob Baxter has made ahead of the new 2013/14 season.
After five years playing in the Welsh capital with the Blues, Sweeney is keen to experience a new playing challenge and feels his move to Sandy Park will offer him the perfect opportunity of testing himself in another tough rugby environment.
"I've never played in the Premiership before so that will be a new experience and it will be good to play in front of full crowds every week," said Sweeney.
"There's a lot of history between these old clubs and playing at their grounds. I have played at some of the grounds, but not all of them so that will be a really good experience as well."
The former Welsh international will link up with his new team-mates for the first time next Wednesday when the Chiefs report in for day one of the dreaded pre-season programme.
He will, however, have a few familiar faces already located within the camp as Ben White, Damian Welch and Phil Dollman are all former team-mates, as is fellow newcomer Tom James, who has also joined from the Blues.
Cardiff, alongside Glasgow Warriors and champions Toulon, are one of three clubs the Chiefs have been pitted against in next season's Heineken Cup and Sweeney says those games will merely add to what he thinks will be an exciting season ahead.
"Back in the season when me and Tom both knew we'd signed for Exeter we said among ourselves we could guarantee we'd draw each other," added Sweeney.
"It will be good, it will add a bit of spice to it and it's always good to go back to a club where you spent a lot of time."
Sweeney - who has won 35 caps for Wales - is well aware the battle for a starting spot will be intense, but he is hopeful of making his own mark from the outset.
"You're always trying to impress the coaches but there's three of us vying for that outside half berth," stated Sweeney.
"I think Gareth Steenson played so well at the end of last season, he was certain of the shirt, and was probably one of the best players in the Premiership for the last four games. He steered the side and played very well and was probably a big factor in why they won a few of the games at the end.
"I'm just looking forward to coming down and being part of the team and squad and hoping I can bring a bit extra to them as well.
"I'm really excited about getting involved. It's a developing club at the moment, they're going places and everyone seems to be on the same page and looking to go forward.
"I've spent a bit of time down there in the off-season, I've been back and forth five or six times, and everyone seems to be Chiefs fans and really routing for them. I'm really looking forward to playing in front of the crowd and the home supporters."