Lockyer keen to avoid bulked-up Inglis - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Lockyer keen to avoid bulked-up Inglis

By Wayne Heming 26/02/2009 05:37:23 PM Comments (0)

Darren Lockyer is hoping reports Melbourne destroyer Greg Inglis has muscled up don't spell a bruising comeback in Saturday night's pre-season showdown at Stockland Park on the Sunshine Coast.

Inglis has packed 6kg on to his athletic frame during the off-season while also lowering his skin fold.

"He's never looked better, he's turned into a machine, he's massive" said a Storm official impressed with the new-look 107kg Inglis.

There's been continued speculation that Test hooker Cameron Smith could start the trial at five-eighth and possibly wear the No.6 this season.

But Inglis will line-up opposite Lockyer after the Brisbane skipper decided this week to "blow out the cobwebs" before the Broncos opening round of the NRL premiership next month.

When told of the Storm star's weight gain, Lockyer said: "who? Inglis?

"Really, six kilos .... leave him out in the centres, I don't want to have to tackle him," smiled Inglis's Queensland Origin skipper.

Lockyer, who'll play the first 40 minutes, said trials allowed coaches to experiment.

"Trials are experimental and I'm sure Craig (Bellamy) is going to try players in different positions as Ivan (Henjak) will be.

"You could play him (Inglis) in 1,2,3,4,5 or 6 and he's still going to be pretty dangerous wherever he plays."

Lockyer said playing the trial would help him get some confidence for Brisbane's blockbuster NRL season opener against the Cowboys on March 13.

Getting some time with new hooker Aaron Gorrell will be a bonus for Lockyer.

Gorrell appears to have the front-running as starting hooker ahead of PJ Marsh, who is battling a hamstring injury, and teenager Andrew McCullough, who is a little inexperienced.

Luckily, Gorrell's game is not unlike departed No.9 Michael Ennis in many ways.

"He's a complete hooker really. He's quick out of dummy half, he's quite smart, he's good at reading the game and he's got a good kicking game," said Lockyer.

"We had a lot of those attributes in Mick Ennis."

Bellamy will play Smith at five-eighth at some stage which means Inglis will oppose his former Storm teammate Israel Folau - a clash even Lockyer would pay good money to watch.

"I'm sure there'd be plenty of banter going on if that happens," said Lockyer.

"They're both gifted athletes and that's what people pay their money to go to see."

Meanwhile Storm forward Ryan Hoffman, left shattered by Brisbane's 2006 grand final upset, said he expected Saturday night's trial to be all-out war.

"Some may class it as a trial, we class it as our first round game," said Hoffman.

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