Brisbane Broncos player Jack Bird in action during a team training session in Brisbane, Thursday, January 30, 2020. (AAP Image/Glenn Hunt) NO ARCHIVING
Brisbane Broncos player Jack Bird in action during a team training session in Brisbane, Thursday, January 30, 2020. (AAP Image/Glenn Hunt) NO ARCHIVING

Another twist in Broncos fullback battle

The battle between Jack Bird and Jamayne Isaako for the Broncos fullback spot is heating up with Bird earning the starting berth for the club's second pre-season trial.

Isaako was widely tipped to succeed the deposed Darius Boyd as Brisbane's custodian this year but Bird has rocketed into contention in recent weeks.

Bird played 30 minutes at the back in Brisbane's trial win over the CQ Capras last week, while Isaako put in an underwhelming display in the NRL Nines.

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Bird will line up at fullback this weekend. AAP Image/Glenn Hunt.
Bird will line up at fullback this weekend. AAP Image/Glenn Hunt.

 

"Jamayne needs to go away and work hard on his fullback play to be ready for Round 1," Broncos Nines coach Kurt Richards said.

"It was disappointing to go out the way we did.

"Jamayne has a bit of work to do defensively with what we call his 'pendulum', which means how he works with his wingers in being in the right position on kick returns.

"He has to make sure he is working hard when he doesn't have the ball. That's what the best fullbacks do."

Croft will play his first proper match alongside Milford. Photo by Will Russell/Getty Images.
Croft will play his first proper match alongside Milford. Photo by Will Russell/Getty Images.

Isaako will play off the bench in the trial against the Cowboys, with Xavier Coates and Herbie Farnworth preferred on the wings.

The match will also give Broncos fans their first look at the new halves combination of Brodie Croft and Anthony Milford.

The two played together at the Nines, but Milford was put on ice after the first match due to a hamstring injury.

Kotoni Staggs, Tevita Pangai Junior, Jake Turpin, Payne Haas, Alex Glenn, Joe Ofahengaue and Pat Carrigan will also take the field in Cairns.

FULL TEAM

1. Jack Bird 2. Herbie Farnworth 3. Kotoni Staggs 4. Jesse Arthars 5. Xavier Coates 6. Anthony Milford 7. Brodie Croft 8. Tevita Pangai Jnr 9. Jake Turpin 10. Payne Haas 11. Alex Glenn (c) 12. Ethan Bullemor 13. Patrick Carrigan Interchange 14. Jamayne Isaako 15. Richie Kennar 16. Tesi Niu 17. Tom Dearden 18. Cory Paix 19. Thomas Flegler 20. Joe Ofahengaue 21. Rhys Kennedy 22. Jamil Hopoate



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