Broncos win race for Jimmy the Jet
THE Jet will not be departing Brisbane, with lightning centre James Roberts to ink a new deal with the Broncos.
Roberts will become the latest player to commit to Wayne Bennett’s premiership pursuit at Red Hill when he signs off on a likely three- year extension, possibly as early as next week.
Roberts ripped the Bulldogs apart with a scintillating twotry performance at Suncorp Stadium on Thursday night to prove he could be Brisbane’s X- factor in the September finals series.
The 24- year- old took his season tally to 13 tries in 17 games in the Canterbury mauling, busting six tackles and running for 149m.
It was feared Roberts may leave Brisbane in search of more money, but stand- in Broncos captain Adam Blair said he had to stay at Red Hill to realise his potential.
“This is where he should be,” he said. “It’s a good place for him to be. He seems to be enjoying himself.
“We all know there is a salary cap and we can’t keep everyone here but we’ve signed pretty much everyone up. It would be good to see Jimmy hang around.
“He is so fast and strong. He is great to have in your team, especially when you get tiring forwards around the middle.
“He is someone that can take the game on, on his own. It’s great to see he’s enjoying himself.”
Roberts had interest from Sydney NRL clubs but the Broncos will reward him for the form he has shown this season with an upgraded deal.
The former Rabbitohs, Panthers and Titans speedster has had a stable season after attending a rehabilitation centre in Thailand last year following off- field incidents.
Broncos utility Benji Marshall said Bennett’s influence had helped turn Roberts’ career around.
“He’s had a few dramas at other places off the field,” Marshall said.
“With the help of Wayne and guys he has around him, it keeps him pretty grounded here. You can see that happiness is reflecting on the field.”