Hodges comes good in comeback game - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Hodges comes good in comeback game

Wayne Heming 26/03/2011 08:41:00 AM Comments (0)

He hadn't played an NRL game for almost 18 months but Justin Hodges was determined to have the match-winning play in his successful comeback game at Skilled Park on Friday night.

Hodges broke an 8-8 deadlock in the 71st minute, scoring off a scrum win after telling Brisbane skipper Darren Lockyer he wanted to the ball.

Despite having Gold Coast enforcer Greg Bird and solid centre Esi Tonga blocking his way to the try line, Hodges stepped and fended his way over to the jubilation of team mates who rushed from all over the field to congratulate him.

It was his first game since late 2009 and he took little time in reminding everyone of his game-breaking ability.

It was his 50th try for Brisbane but, more importantly, it signalled his return after fears he may not be the same player after rupturing his Achilles tendon in November, 2009.

"It was a good comeback," said Hodges who left the field after scoring the key try.

"Locky (Lockyer) wanted to give me an outball but I knew they were moving up pretty quick on me so I wanted to get the ball early and hope the right foot (step) was still there and it turned out good.

"It felt good, obviously when you have a big injury you lose the confidence to step off it but I've been doing it all off season and it paid off."

Hodges had treatment on his hamstring after the game but was confident of being right for Penrith next Friday night at Suncorp Stadium.

"It's not as serious as last time so if I look after it over the weekend I should be right for next week," he said.

Of more serious concern was young fullback Josh Hoffman who left the ground on crutches after receiving a nasty cork late in the first half that could sideline him for two weeks.

Titans forward Ashley Harrison will have scans on the weekend for a hamstring injury which forced him off the field late in the game.

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