Benji opens up on Broncos move

By Mark St John
November 11, 2016

BENJI Marshall has spoken for the first time as a Brisbane player opening up on why he joined the Broncos.

Marshall signed with the Wayne Bennett coached team on a one year deal for 2017 after a heart to heart with his former international mentor.

Marshall’s contract was officially registered by the NRL and the former Tiger and Dragon was excited by the opportunity to contribute to such a great club.

“It is obviously a very surprising move but I didn’t come here to play in the halves,” admitted Marshall.

“I think it is a great opportunity to step away from that role and sometimes when you play in the halves you do a lot of organising and forget about what you have to do.

“I think after so many years of ball playing I forgot about my running game and that is something I expressed to Wayne and that is what I want to find.

“I just thought with the best coach in the world it would be good for him to get the best out of myself.”

Marshall was adamant he wasn’t coming to the Broncos to be the focal point and would play any role asked of him.

“That is one thing Wayne made clear to me that I don’t need you to come here and be the man I just want you to be the Benji I met ten years ago when you were smiling and laughing and happy and throwing flick passes.

“Obviously it is not about the money so he knows I am here for the right reasons and I feel like I have a lot to prove.”

Marshall believes he can play a number of different roles for the club throughout a long NRL season.

“I made my debut at fullback for the Tigers and Tim Sheens made me play centre in 2004 because he wanted me to understand what a centre needs from a ball player,” explained Marshall.

“It is just an opportunity for me and obviously I can cover a lot of positions and over the preseason I am going to find out a lot about myself and where I can fit in.

“I’m very confident that I can play a few positions so we will see how we go.”

Marshall admitted there is a chance he could be playing reserve grade but was aiming for a starting spot regardless.

“Wayne did say there is a chance I could be playing reserve grade but I’m going to back myself to have a good preseason and prove that I still have what it takes.

“I think I can add a lot of experience to the young guys and add some of my culture to this club.

“This club has a great culture and I feel like I can add something a little bit different.”

The former Kiwi captain never envisaged he would end his career at the Broncos but was nonetheless grateful for the lifeline.

“It has all happened so quickly and for me it is just a great opportunity to play in front of 38-odd thousand people packed into Suncorp every week.

“It is something you want to play in front of and those big crowds help you rise to the occasion and to be a part of a powerhouse club like the Broncos it is pretty exciting for me.

Marshall will likely debut for the Broncos in the round one fixture against the defending premiers Cronulla if he can make the final 17.