In-form Hodkinson gives a nod to Kimmorley - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

In-form Hodkinson gives a nod to Kimmorley

By Ian McCullough 30/03/2011 06:45:34 PM Comments (0)

Canterbury halfback Trent Hodkinson credits Brett Kimmorley's mentorship for his strong start to the season.

Hodkinson has been in superb form since arriving at the club from Manly and the Bulldogs are the only unbeaten team in the NRL, having won all three games so far.

The 22-year-old said halves coach Kimmorley, who retired at the end of last season, has been instrumental in helping him and another new signing, five-eighth Kris Keating, to hit the ground running at their new club.

"Noddy was a great player, and to have the chance to work with someone like him was a real factor in me coming to the club, and I have learned a great deal from him," Hodkinson told AAP.

"He has really worked on our kicking games and spends a lot of time talking to us about the game and what to expect, he is an excellent communicator and has been a big help."

The former Parramatta junior admits leaving Manly was the toughest decision he has had to make in his short career, revealing the reaction from former coach Des Hasler was more than generous.

"Leaving Manly was very hard, I had my first full season in first grade there and I really loved the place," he said.

"Des was very disappointed to lose me, but he said he fully respected my decision and wished me all the best which meant a lot to me.

"Telling the boys I was going was also very hard but they understood, but I am delighted to be here at the Dogs and the start we have had is better than we could have hoped for considering we have so many new faces."

Kimmorley said the close relationship Hodkinson and Keating have off the field is one of the main factors in their early success on it.

The pair played together as schoolboys and also in the Eels' junior sides and the former NSW halfback has been impressed with their early contributions.

"I think the halves are not only good kids but they have got some talent which makes it easier when you are trying to improve their football game," Kimmorley told AAP.

"I think their start to the season has been great, it is hard for young halves coming into a pressure situation, in terms of control and composure, and in the games we have played they have looked like experienced players.

"Thankfully they have some past history and if you are mates off the field it helps, and the good thing is they will improve the more they play together.

"The idea of having young halves and a young fullback like Ben Barba is that hopefully they will stick around.

"This club is renowned for having guys who stay for a long time and I hope all three can do that."

Brought to you by AAP AAP © 2020 AAP

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