Boyd set for Storm showdown
THE Broncos have received a huge boost with Brisbane medicos giving Darius Boyd the green light for a fullback duel with Billy Slater in Friday night’s grand-final qualifier against the Storm.
The cavalry is returning at the perfect time for the Broncos, who will welcome back inspirational skipper Boyd and boom forward Tevita Pangai Jr from hamstring injuries for the blockbuster at AAMI Park.
It has been an agonising fortnight for Boyd and Pangai Jr, who have missed Brisbane’s first two finals games after suffering hamstring strains in the Broncos’ 20-10 defeat of the Cowboys in Townsville.
But classy custodian Boyd is ready to be unleashed on the Storm and Slater, the fullback rival who stole his Queensland jumper three months ago after the Maroons’ heavy loss in Origin I.
Broncos coach Wayne Bennett has taken a cautious approach but Brisbane highperformance chief Jeremy Hickmans says Boyd has made a sufficient recovery.
“I expect Darius to play,” Hickmans said in the wake of Brisbane’s 13-6 sudden-death disposal of Penrith on Friday night at Suncorp Stadium.
“Physically, his hamstring is fine, it’s now just a mental thing and whether Darius believes he is ready to go.
“He was really close to playing against Penrith, we got through that final session OK but Darius later told us he wasn’t 100 per cent comfortable.
“Darius will train the whole week. He should be fine. I would be very surprised if he doesn’t play.”
Boyd’s impending return is a major fillip for the Broncos.
While he is renowned for his peerless option-taking in three-on-two situations in attack, Boyd is also a brilliant communicator.