Marmin Barba scored 22 tries in 23 games for the Ipswich Jets last season.

Marmin the forgotten Barba

When Wayne Bennett tapped Ben Barba on the shoulder in November last year to inform him that he couldn't guarantee him a place in Brisbane's side for 2015 the Cronulla Sharks came circling. 

Like any apex predator the Sharks had no real competition for the 2012 Dally M winner's signature. 

However in their feeding frenzy for fresh playing talent over the summer they opted against signing Barba's younger brother, Marmin.

When Ben signed his ill-fated Broncos contract after gaining a release from Canterbury in 2013, Marmin also joined Brisbane's stable as part of a package deal in order to keep his brother content.

While all the focus in 2014 was on whether Ben could rediscover the confidence he had in spades two seasons earlier, Marmin quietly went about his business grafting away in Intrust Super Cup for the Ipswich Jets.

In arguably the strongest rugby league competition outside of the NRL, Barba scored 22 tries in 23 games for the Jets until they eventually crashed out in week two of the finals.

The 24-year-old is on track to repeat his try-scoring feats in 2015 with four tries from as many games including a hat-trick against the Sunshine Coast Falcons last weekend.

With his deal at the Broncos due to expire at the end of the season, Marmin is determine to forge his own playing identity and not just live in Ben's shadow. 

"People pretty much know me as Ben Barba's little brother but I don't let it get to me," Barba told NRL.com.

"I get a lot of it but I try to play my own footy and make a name for myself."

Like his older brother, Marmin was born in Darwin and grew up playing his junior footy for Norths Mackay.

He survived Hodgkin's lymphoma as a teenager before playing SG Ball under-18s for the Bulldogs while Ben was making his name in the senior side.

After his stint at The Kennel he moved to the Eels in 2012 to play NYC under-20s and looked on track to make an NRL debut in that season before a knee injury put his career temporarily on ice. 

In late 2012 he signed for the Titans and played for Tweed Heads in the ISC before joining the Broncos with his older brother.

Despite a distinct lack of opportunities at the Broncos due to the club's tremendous depth of talent in outside backs, Barba still has his fingers crossed that an NRL opportunity may present itself at Red Hill.

"I definitely have hopes of cracking into the side but right now I'm focussed on playing good footy in Q-Cup (Intrust Super Cup) and hopefully I'll play NRL one day and when I do I'll be happy," he said.

Understandably frustrated at being towards the end of Brisbane's selection queue, Barba strongly considered a code switch to play Rugby Sevens ahead of 2016 Rio Olympics but was persuaded to stay with the Jets by co-coaches Ben and Shane Walker.

"I wanted to go [to rugby] but I was just too comfortable at Ipswich. Ben and Shane have really helped me out, it's a really good club and they've made me feel pretty welcome so I didn't really want to leave them," he said.

"Maybe later on down the track it could be an option but I'll just stay here for now.

"I'd love to play NRL but my biggest focus is playing good footy down here at this level and hopefully play NRL sooner or later."

In good news for Sharks fans, Marmin refused to rule out moving to Cronulla to join his brother should the opportunity arise in the future.

"I wouldn't mind moving down there with him and hopefully play in the same side as him which would be pretty good. 

"In saying that right now my biggest focus is on the Jets."