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Kotoni Staggs in action for the Redcliffe Dolphins.

The advice and example of Tyrone Peachey remains an inspiration for Broncos rookie Kotoni Staggs as he prepares to line up at centre for Redcliffe against Easts in the Intrust Super Cup grand final at Suncorp Stadium on Sunday.

Staggs, like Peachey, hails from the central west NSW town of Wellington and the Panthers dynamo blazed a trail that the 19-year-old Bronco has long been inspired to follow.

"When I was a young kid Tyrone was at Penrith and he used to come back home to see his nan and pop. I would ask him 'What do I have to do to get to the spot you're in?' and he would always tell me 'keep training hard and never give up'," Staggs told

"I'd seen what he had done for the community and it was inspiring. I knew that it was only a matter of time before I could give back to the community as well if I worked hard.

"Tyrone and the game of footy actually made me strive to achieve the dream I had as a child which was to play NRL for the Brisbane Broncos.

"Whether I am training at Redcliffe or with the Broncos I always compete and I come out and play with the same mindset."

Panthers livewire Tyrone Peachey.
Panthers livewire Tyrone Peachey. ©Robb Cox/NRL Photos

Staggs's rise in 2018 has mirrored Broncos teammate David Fifita's ascension to the NRL. Fifita started playing under 18s for Souths-Logan, progressed to the club's Intrust Super Cup side and in round 11 made his Telstra Premiership debut.

A lifelong Broncos supporter who idolised Darren Lockyer as a youth, Staggs began his season in the under 20s and after several games was called up by Redcliffe coach Adam Mogg. He hasn't looked back and played nine games for the Broncos.

Next season he will be in Brisbane's top 30 squad and will keep the heat on Jordan Kahu and Jack Bird for a starting centre position.

But first there is a trophy to be won. In just 13 Intrust Super Cup games for Redcliffe this year Staggs scored 162 points from 12 tries and 57 goals to be the second leading scorer for the competition.

"Grand finals never come easy and to be able to lift that trophy will mean a lot to me, my family and the Redcliffe club so I am looking forward to going out there on Sunday and putting on a show," Staggs said.

"After that I am going to hit pre-season hard because my goal at the Broncos for next year now I am in the top 30 is to be in the top 17 each week.

"I still remember watching the Broncos versus Dragons [in the 2011 semi-final] when Darren Lockyer got his cheekbone broken and I went down to Manly the next week to watch him play live because I thought he was coming back to play… but he didn't come back.

Darren Lockyer kicks the winning field goal against the Dragons in 2011.
Darren Lockyer kicks the winning field goal against the Dragons in 2011. ©NRL Photos

"Growing up he was the one that drove me to chase that Broncos dream. I always wished I could do what he did."

You can also be sure that Peachey will remain an inspiration in whatever Staggs does on the footy field.

"I ended up getting some game time Tyrone him in 2016 playing in the Koori Knockout with a team called Nanima Common Connection, a team we made up from all our family and our mob back in Wellington," Staggs said.

"I played centre and he was five-eighth and it was a lot of fun playing alongside him, just knowing that we come from the same community and are doing our community proud."

Acknowledgement of Country

National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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