Brisbane No.7 ready to face NRL idol
COMPLACENCY won't be an issue when Brisbane halfback Kodi Nikorima lines up against his idol Benji Marshall in Friday night's NRL clash against Wests Tigers at Campbelltown.
But the Broncos No.7 admitted it may have been their downfall on their last away trip - a horror season-opening loss to St George Illawarra.
Nikorima, 23, said he can't wait to play childhood hero Marshall, who took the pint-sized Kiwi playmaker under his wing during his 2017 Broncos stint.
Marshall mentored Nikorima and halves partner Anthony Milford last season before returning this year to the Tigers where he had played 201 games from 2003-13.
Nikorima was excited to show Marshall just how far he had come since their Broncos days after finally clicking with Milford in last week's morale-boosting round two win over North Queensland in Brisbane.
"I am just fortunate I can call one of my idols a friend now," Nikorima said of Marshall.
"He helped me and Milf.
"It's good to learn from blokes like that with a lot of experience, now I have to implement that into my game.
"It's an exciting game coming up against Benji.
"I have to be on."
Nikorima admitted Brisbane may not have adopted the same mindset for their round-one clash with the Dragons, saying they thought it would be "easy".
Brisbane's final hopes were dismissed and their halves savaged for their lack of impact after the 34-12 opening loss to the Dragons.
"I thought we trained pretty well leading up to the Dragons game but during the game our heads weren't in the right place. We probably went down there thinking it was going to be easy," Nikorima said.
"It was a disappointing loss which we all felt as a team, club and the fans.
"We didn't get into the grind with the Dragons. That's what changed for us last week (against the Cowboys)."