Hunt draws line in the sand
BEN Hunt is primed to run riot against the Titans tonight, thanks to an alcohol and junk food overhaul which has him in the best shape of his career.
Hunt is a man on a mission at Suncorp Stadium, although statistics show the Broncos half- back has made only five line breaks this year, well shy of the 23 he produced in his bumper campaign last season.
That’s an 80 per cent decrease in Hunt’s attacking thrust, prompting Broncos assistant coach Kevin Walters to give the No. 7 a licence to run the ball at every opportunity.
The figures do not concern Hunt because, for the first time since his NRL debut six years ago, he has struck the right balance on and off the field.
On it, he has found a consistent scrumbase foil in Anthony Milford, whose dynamic running has eased the pressure on Hunt to be Brisbane’s primary creative weapon.
Off the paddock, Hunt has overhauled his diet and attitude, saying the days of abusing his body with fast food and booze are over.
The 25- year- old has benefited from his more professional approach, saying he is fitter than ever as he looks to torment the Titans and steer Brisbane closer to their first minor premiership in 15 years.
“I feel so much he a l t h i e r now and
have more energy than ever,” Hunt said. “As I’ve gotten older, I felt things had to change to help my body and stay in the NRL. “When I was younger, I’d go out on the drink every weekend. I would have junk food
times a Sometimes would
I get the
dr i n k F r i d a y night and eat fast food all weekend. “I still have a treat every now and then, but my partner has improved my diet immensely and it’s helping me play better football because I’m leaner and feeling better. “This year I probably haven’t had as many standout games, but I have found a better balance. Last year, I had some real
highs but then I’d have lows and go missing in games.”
Hunt’s tackle busts have decreased from 62 to 32 this season but he has created more line break assists ( 24 to 16) and improved his kicking metres ( 315 to 418). With Milford in fine form, Hunt has been given a licence to thrill against the Titans after a tactical discussion with Walters.
“It’s been a strong part of my game, my running,” Hunt said. “I’ve watched some video with Kevvie and he said, ‘ You need to run the ball a bit more in each half’.
“It’s something I want to do. I need to get my hands on the ball and take the line on.”
Broncos coach Wayne Bennett praised Hunt’s ability to keep the Brisbane juggernaut rolling:
“I couldn’t be happier with Ben Hunt. I really like Ben’s tenacity, his attitude is great and he loves to compete.’’