Benji Marshall believes South Sydney have the potential to win a premiership in 2021 with the veteran playmaker keen to play a Michael Morgan style Origin role for the Rabbitohs.
Marshall joined South Sydney at the end of the January and while the Kiwi veteran has no intention of taking starting spots off Cody Walker and Adam Reynolds, the 35-year-old is eyeing off a utility role that would have him lurking around the ruck.
"I have no expectations, obviously going to Souths I know what my role is going to be and I won’t be starting," Marshall said.
"I’ve played long enough to put my best foot forward and I will just prove my point that I should get picked every week and if I don’t I will keep proving it until I do.
"I won’t be playing 13 but if I can come off the bench to play a role through the middle that’s fine. Second hooker maybe or ball player, a bit like how Michael Morgan plays Origin when he comes off the bench. That sort of role."
Benji reveals brotherly spray in special Maori debut
With the Rabbitohs' attack now boasting the likes of Walker, Marshall, Reynolds, Latrell Mitchell and leading tryscorer Alex Johnston, there is little wonder they are being talked about as genuine title contenders.
Marshall can certainly see the premiership potential and is hoping his injection of big-game experience can help Souths back to the top.
"The squad is very talented and I feel I can add a lot to the squad and help with a few things there," he said.
Match Highlights: Indigenous v Maori
"But playing is my No.1 priority. I will do everything I can to make sure I’m in the 17 every week.
"There is a chance to win a competition there, but they’re hard to win man. You’ve got to put it together, injury-free for 24 rounds and then semis and it is hard to do."
One person thinking the Rabbitohs are the real deal is Indigenous All Stars coach Laurie Daley. He has seen the difference 12 months has made in Mitchell’s conversion to fullback and knows the potential is limitless for the young star.
"He is just classy, Latrell," Daley said.
"He knows how good he can be and once he gets himself right, he is a weapon. I think these blokes [South Sydney] are in for a good year.”
Mitchell was happy with how he pulled up after the Indigenous side's draw with the Maori in the Harvey Norman All Stars in Townsville on Saturday night after getting through 64 minutes and setting up a crucial try late in the game.
Latrell lays it on for Johnston
His 2020 season was ruined by a hamstring injury and although his fitness is where he wants it to be, he knows it’s a long year ahead and he wants to make sure he’s peaking at the business end.
"Honestly, I can’t wait for 2021," Mitchell said.
"My match fitness was better than I thought it would be considering I’ve been out for a long time.
"I just want to build it slowly. I’m not in a rush to break records."
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