Rookie Gillett to start for Broncos - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Rookie Gillett to start for Broncos

By Wayne Heming 12/08/2010 07:19:57 PM Comments (0)

Brisbane coach Ivan Henjak is set to hand rookie Matt Gillett a promotion to starting five-eighth against Parramatta on Friday night.

While the Broncos have officially named Corey Norman to fill the rather large boots of Darren Lockyer at pivot, it is understood the gun 22 year-old utility will get first crack at the role.

Norman will be named on the bench and is likely to get some game time later at No.6.

Gillett, one of the finds of the season with 11 tries in 17 games, has played numerous positions from second-row to wing, but is more accustomed to the fierce pace of NRL games than 18 year-old Norman who has spent the past month playing under 20s.

Some observers have compared Gillett's running style and vision to former Manly international Nik Kosef, a classy ball playing forward equally at home playing lock, second-row or five-eighth.

Lockyer (rib cartilage) fronted at Red Hill on Thursday with a bundle of x-rays after Eels skipper Nathan Cayless suggested he may be "foxing" and would play on Friday night.

"Did you see him (Lockyer) out there?," Henjak said with a smile after being told of the theories coming from the Eels camp.

"We're not foxing."

Henjak couldn't even be certain Lockyer would be back on deck to play against the Warriors in two weeks.

"If there's still a huge risk when that time comes we will re-asses him," he said.

"We're not going to risk him this far out, we want to get him right first."

Henjak conceded if Brisbane secured two premiership points against a desperate and unpredictable Parramatta it could influence any decision on Lockyer's return.

"That (two points) might play a part in it but we're not assured of a spot yet, but it could be a factor I suppose.

"We want him for the semis, so if we play him and he does further damage he may not play again this year," said Henjak.

Parramatta's last 11 trips to Suncorp Stadium have yielded just three wins but this is a massive game with their NRL season hanging on the result.

"This is more than likely their grand final, they've got to win it to stay alive and we're expecting them to plat that way," said Henjak.

Kiwi international Cayless will break Brad Fittler's record of 216 games as an NRL captain to be the competition's most capped skipper and his team mates would love to make it a night to remember.

It won't be such a memorable occasion for regular Eels halfback Daniel Mortimer who has been dumped by coach Daniel Anderson following a string of inconsistent performances.

Kris Keating is expected to start in the No.7 jumper.

Back-rower Ben Smith will miss the clash after failing to beat a judiciary wrap but wrecking ball Fuifui Moimoi will play after lodging an early guilty plea to his charge.

The prospect of Brisbane's Sam Thaiday and Moimoi going head-to-head was one Henjak was excited about.

"I'm looking forward to that battle and a couple of our other young guns having a little crack (at Moimoi) too," he said.

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