Thurston shouldn't feel disloyal: Hunt - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Thurston shouldn't feel disloyal: Hunt

12/02/2010 12:51:14 PM Comments (0)

Code-leaper Karmichael Hunt denies Johnathan Thurston should feel led by any sense of loyalty in sticking with rugby league.

In throwing his support behind former Queensland and Test teammate Thurston's possible switch to union, AFL-recruit Hunt said the star halfback should not feel duty-bound to league.

Hunt is currently playing rugby union in France for Biarritz but is scheduled to make his senior Australian rules debut in the VFL for Gold Coast in June.

The 23-year-old former Broncos fullback told the Brisbane Times online newspaper that Thurston had given his code great service and deserved to explore new challenges in union despite the backlash it would bring.

"I don't think anyone has a duty to stick to one code," he told brisbanetimes.com.au.

"The basis of loyalty for me is serving your club to the best of your ability, for the duration of your contract.

"Thursto has given his club, state and country and of course rugby league nothing but his best.

"What I think needs to be remembered, is that a contract serves both parties equally.

"For someone like Thursto who has achieved so much in rugby league, I can understand why he may be open to the thought of experiencing new challenges."

The Cowboys are desperate to re-sign Thurston for beyond the 2010 NRL season but are unable to compete with the riches on offer in rugby overseas, or if the Australian Rugby Union want him as a member of the Wallabies' 2011 World Cup campaign.

Hunt, who signed a lucrative three-year deal with Gold Coast, revealed his Biarritz teammates were impressed by his bold plans to play AFL.

"I've kicked the sherrin around a few times (at training) but I have mainly been kicking with a normal rugby ball," he said.

"My teammates think it's awesome that I'm giving it a go."

With less than 10 high school games of experience, Hunt said the huge challenge reminded him of his first season in the NRL with the Broncos in 2004 when just 17.

"I know I'm not going to be great at it straight away but I'm confident that I have the ability to learn, and the quality coaching staff to help me make this transition a success," he said.

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