Brisbane legend Steve Renouf tells James Roberts not to quit Broncos
May 22, 2019
Brisbane legend Steve Renouf has appealed for James Roberts not to quit the Broncos as the struggling NSW Origin star prepares to make his Intrust Super Cup debut this week.
The Courier-Mail can reveal Roberts will make his Wynnum Manly debut against Norths Devils on Sunday — just hours before NSW coach Brad Fittler unveils his Blues side for Origin I next Wednesday.
Named as 19th man in Brisbane’s extended 21-man squad, Roberts was not included in the Seagulls’ official team list released on Tuesday, but he will face the Devils barring any injury mishaps at Broncos training on Wednesday.
It will be Roberts’ first game of football in 24 days since he last appeared for the Broncos in their 38-6 loss to South Sydney on May 2.
Reduced to making up the numbers at Broncos training in recent weeks, Roberts’ future at Red Hill is seemingly untenable — and it will almost certainly cost “The Jet” his NSW jumper.
Fittler gave Roberts hope last week but one appearance for feeder club Wynnum Manly, however dominant it may be, will surely not be enough to help him reclaim his Blues centre spot.
There is speculation Broncos coach Anthony Seibold will never again pick Roberts for the Broncos. But Seibold insists there is no bad blood and has given the centre detailed feedback on the areas in which he must improve.
Despite Roberts being on the outer at Red Hill, Brisbane’s greatest centre Renouf urged the 26-year-old not to walk out on the Broncos.
“I really hope James stays there. I’d hate to see him leave,” Renouf said.
“Walking out isn’t the answer. Souths aren’t keen on him now, so I think the Broncos is the best club for James in terms of his welfare and turning him around.
“Jimmy has to bide his time and keep himself fit to capitalise on any opportunity that comes up.”
While he believes Roberts can fight back at the Broncos, Renouf says Brisbane must tailor a game plan to extract the best of the fallen Blues ace.
“I’ve always said James hasn’t been given enough clean ball to truly shine,” Renouf said.
“I still think Brisbane aren’t using him right.
“Even when Wayne Bennett was coach, I told Wayne that James needed to be on the left side, not the right, and he would be more dangerous there getting clean ball.
“Anthony Milford attacks really well down that left side, so I’d love to see James combine with him.”
Source: Courier Mail