Brisbane five-eighth Corey Norman had only two wishes at the start of the year – to enjoy a successful season in his first full year for the Broncos and for the inevitable comparisons with club legend Darren Lockyer to come to an end.
Halfway through the 2012 season and the signs are all good for the impressive 21-year-old.
“Yeah it’s good now – all that talk of taking over from ‘Locky’ is over, that’s done and dusted, so I’m just trying to get on now and play the best for the boys. I feel like my confidence is getting better each week and I’m able to just go out and play my own game.”
Certainly all eyes were on Norman when they ran out for their Round 1 clash with Parramatta – their first competition game since Lockyer’s retirement – but the passing of the baton has barely rated a mention since, with Brisbane sitting outright second after 14 rounds.
“I think winning has really helped me and I put a lot of my good footy at the start of the season down to the team,” Norman said. “The forwards were awesome and it’s always easier when your forwards are bending the line and giving you a lot of options to do your thing.”
Notably, Norman has always been quick to point out that he isn’t the ‘next Darren Lockyer’ and he offers a similar perspective when the prospect of lining up against Johnathan Thurston tonight is raised.
Asked if he looked to the likes of Thurston for inspiration, the youngster replied: “No, not really.
“He is a great player and you always learn something from watching him play but I don’t really sit there watching other halves too much. I watch video of who will be on my side of the field, but that’s about it.”