Niko­rima deal gives Bron­cos op­tions once Hunt de­parts

Townsville Bulletin - - SPORT - TRAVIS MEYN

BEN Hunt is fac­ing an­other chal­lenge for his No. 7 jer­sey as Wayne Ben­nett de­clared Kodi Niko­rima has the op­por­tu­nity to be­come Bris­bane’s next long- term half­back.

The Bron­cos yes­ter­day se­cured Niko­rima for a fur­ther three sea­sons, lock­ing him up at Red Hill un­til at least the end of 2020.

Niko­rima, 23, will re­place Dragons- bound Hunt in the jer­sey made fa­mous by Al­lan Langer next year but he is mount­ing a case for an ear­lier el­e­va­tion in the run to the NRL fi­nals.

Ben­nett sent Hunt to re­serve grade last month and opted to start Niko­rima at half­back. In the seven games Niko­rima has started at half­back this sea­son the Bron­cos are un­beaten.

While he pro­duced two tries with deft kicks, Hunt was er­ratic dur­ing Satur­day’s win against lowly New­cas­tle.

Niko­rima sat out the Knights game but Ben­nett con­firmed he was in the mix for a re­call in Thurs­day’s clash against the Bull­dogs at Sun­corp Sta­dium.

An­thony Mil­ford is guar­an­teed to start at five- eighth while Hunt, Niko­rima and Benji Mar­shall are his pos­si­ble play­mak­ing part­ners.

Ben­nett said he was yet to de­cide on the make- up of his team for the Bull­dogs game.

Bronco Kodi Niko­rima.

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