Made available to the media for the first time since the infamous social media scandal that saw him suspended, Valentine Holmes has addressed the incident and being selected for the Kangaroos.

The 28-year was suspended for one match by the NRL and North Queensland Cowboys and was slapped with a $100,000 fine after he posted a picture on social media of a bag in his mouth with what appeared to be white powder in September.

Despite instantly deleting the picture, the image made rounds on social media sites, which saw him hit with a breach notice by the NRL.

Holmes was immediately asked what was in the white bag but failed to give a decisive answer, instead remaining tight-lipped on the ordeal.

“I gave my statement to the integrity unit, the NRL and the club,” Holmes said via the Herald.

“So I'd prefer to leave it at that.

“Obviously, it's a pleasure to be here. Mal has confidence in me doing the job for Australia, it's always a pleasure to be here.”

“I had some tough talks with the family, my side of the family and my wife's side of the family,” he added.

“It was a tough couple of days for a bit there. You've just got to move on, move forward and learn from it. Just be better … You never take anything for granted in life, especially what we do as footy players.

“You don't know when our last game could be or what could happen outside of footy. To be able to wear this training jersey for Australia alongside some of the great players in our game, it's a privilege to even be here.”

TOWNSVILLE, AUSTRALIA - JULY 22: Valentine Holmes of the Cowboys loduring the round 21 NRL match between North Queensland Cowboys and Parramatta Eels at Qld Country Bank Stadium on July 22, 2023 in Townsville, Australia. (Photo by Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images)

While he was evasive and failed to give a straight answer on what was in the bag, Holmes spoke about the impact it had on his representative career.

Holmes admitted he feared he wouldn't represent the Kangaroos again. This came after he was overlooked for the Australia Prime Minister's XIII trip to Papua New Guinea last month, although he has played 19 matches in the green and gold jersey to date.

“Yeah, definitely,” he said.

“Not only with what happened, but I hadn't played the last four games with the Cowboys as well due to suspension for the high tackle.

“I didn't think he'd select me. Obviously, I'd been doing a lot of training, it's just the games I've been missing out on; it's been almost 10 or 11 weeks since I've played footy.

“To see the trust he has instilled in me to pull on this jersey in this game, especially for this one, my next one is my 20th Test and it's a pretty big milestone for me.”