Broncos vow to make Kevvie proud
Boom Brisbane playmaker Tom Dearden has vowed to return the Broncos to their winning ways as he looks to emulate the success of former club great - now head coach - Kevin Walters.
The 19-year-old is off contract at the end of the 2021 season but is planning to recommit to the club long-term in an effort to rebuild the bumbling Broncos following their horrendous 2020 campaign.
It comes as the club scored a big win on Monday, securing global sportswear brand ASICS as its official apparel partner on a five year deal from 2021 - incorporating a brand new jersey design which features moisture wicking, quick drying and light weight material.
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The announcement comes on the first day of pre-season training at Red Hill and the beginning of life under new head coach Walters.
The 19-year-old Dearden - who played 12 games during Brisbane's nightmare 2020 season - admitted he had taken a "good hard look" at his performance and wanted to make amends in the seasons ahead.
The youngster was a "shining light" when pitchforked into the No. 7 jersey in the latter stages of the year but is set to battle it out with fellow playmaker Brodie Croft for the first-choice halfback role next season.
Dearden said the biggest advantage was having six time premiership-winning playmaker Walters as his new mentor and a player he wanted to emulate on the field.
"He played in a very successful Broncos side and won plenty of premierships," Dearden said.
"He's been there and done that before so he's definitely someone I'd love to follow in his footsteps and what he's done at the club.
"Kevvie has such a big history with the Broncos so I'm really looking forward to learning off him.
"I can see he's going to instil that culture back in the group and really bring the group back together.
"He's an ex-halfback and five-eighth so I reckon I can learn a lot off him and what he does around the group."
The rising star remains confident in the future at Red Hill and revealed he wants to stay at the Broncos for good.
"I've been at the Broncos since I was 13 years of age so it's definitely the club I want to spend my whole career at," he said.
"There's a real good opportunity for me now so I'm looking forward to getting into pre-season training.
"I definitely want to be here long-term."
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Despite their wooden spoon finish in 2020, confidence is high at the Broncos - in both the playing group and sponsors.
ASICS Oceania managing director Mark Brunton said the company was proud to be involved in the high-profile NRL club.
"The Brisbane Broncos have a great reputation of being a dominant force in the league and we're looking forward to proving both the NRL and NRLW teams with sportswear that will meet their high-performance requirements," Brunton said.
Broncos teammate Payne Haas also commended the new look jersey for the 2021 season.
"The new ASICS kit feels great and looks awesome," Haas said.
"It's lightweight, extremely breathable and really embraces our club's spirit by giving a nod to vintage Broncos uniforms."
Originally published as Broncos vow to make Kevvie proud