Broncos keen to keep Wallace up north - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Broncos keen to keep Wallace up north

By Wayne Heming 02/06/2008 06:15:00 PM Comments (0)

Brisbane have activated a representative clause in halfback Peter Wallace's contract that could help them fend off attempts from rival clubs to lure him away from the Broncos.

Wallace, who has come from virtual obscurity at the beginning of the season to claim the NSW Origin halfback jumper, is seen as a player whom Brisbane can re-build around after the departure of coach Wayne Bennett and several key players.

Hooker Michael Ennis on Monday became the latest Bronco to announce his departure next season, agreeing to a three-year deal with the Bulldogs who last week snared to prized signing of Ennis's Brisbane teammate and Origin prop Ben Hannant on a $1 million three-year package.

"I always thought this would be home," said Ennis, also heavily chased by Parramatta after Brisbane told him a few months ago they had no money.

Wallace, who'll be handed his second Origin jumper tomorrow, said his manager Allan Gainey had initiated talks with Brisbane since he made his representative debut for City against Country last month followed by his Origin debut.

"I won't be doing anything until after the Origin series," said Wallace, in line for a pay rise and a contract extension after emerging as the answer to Brisbane's long term halfback woes.

While NRL clubs would have the 22-year-old on their shopping lists for 2010, Gainey said Wallace was a loyal kid who would remember which club gave him his big break.

Wallace had a tumultuous season with Penrith before Brisbane offered him the chance to play halfback.

"We've activated the representative clause but we won't be talking anything, contract-wise until after the Origin series," Gainey told AAP.

"The Broncos agree it's disturbing and that no kid should be put through it and they're prepared to wait until after Origin to talk."

Gainey said whether Wallace signed beyond 2009 would depend of the "figures" Brisbane came up with.

"But Peter's a pretty loyal kid. He knows where he got his big opportunity and where he got his chance.

"We're going to sit down with Brisbane and give them every opportunity to keep him if they've got what he deserves."

Brisbane, who have signed boom Storm youngster Israel Folau, have been forced to let some quality players go because of the salary cap.

But Wallace is the style of player the club could build a premiership around a few years down the track.

"You don't find halfbacks really easily these days," said Gainey whose 30-odd clients include Greg Inglis, Luke Bailey, Preston Campbell and several Penrith internationals.

Wallace said he was expecting Queensland to seriously up the ante in Origin II next week after he sneaked under their radar in Sydney.

Queensland are likely to have experienced forward Steve Price back and his ability to pressure kickers will cut down Wallace's time a little.

"I'm going to be targeted more, I'm expecting that," said Wallace.

"I don't want to rest on my laurels of one good Origin game, I really want to back it up in Brisbane and hopefully we can wrap up the series."

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