Young Broncos utility Kodi Nikorima is prepared to wait behind Brisbane stars Ben Hunt and Anthony Milford as he continues to stake his claim for a starting spot in the dominant Broncos 17.
The 21-year-old starred in Brisbane’s dismantling of English Super League side Wigan in Saturday’s World Club Series clash, with the incumbent New Zealand halfback earning his start following Ben Hunt's one-game suspension.
Nikorima looked right at home in the No.7 jersey as he scored two tries and had a number of quality touches that helped the Broncos run away with the match 42-12.
But come Round 1 it will be Nikorima on the bench and Hunt at halfback as natural order is restored.
Nikorima says he knows his place in the team and hopes the friendly competition will take his game to another level.
“Long term I want to be at halfback but obviously ‘Benny’ Hunt will be back next week,” said Nikorima.
“I’ll just keep pushing him and ‘Milf’ to make their game go to another level and they’ll do the same for me.
“We stuck to the basics today, the same as we did all last year. We didn’t change much.
“It helped when our forwards were really dominant in that first half. It gave us a lot of opportunities out wide.”
It was a great team performance for Brisbane as they now prepare for their Round 1 match against the Eels at Pirtek Stadium.
Five-eighth Milford played brilliantly and it looks as if the Broncos have found a new replacement for injured centre Jack Reed.
Englishmen Greg Eden was a standout on the wing as he scored an 85-metre try against his former team.
Eden’s defence had been a worry for Brisbane coach Wayne Bennett but the 25-year-old cast away any doubts as he muscled up, making a number of crucial tackles.
Nikorima praised the performance of Eden who now looks a certainty to start come Round 1.
“I thought Eden was tremendous,” said Nikorima.
“His defence was great. He saved a few tries.
“When he was in space he was lightning.
“All and all our right edge held our own out there. We had those two tries we conceded that were unfortunate but we’ll get back to training and fix that for next week.”