Sims joins Broncos, Petero uncertain - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Sims joins Broncos, Petero uncertain

By Todd Balym 23/06/2007 03:01:43 PM Comments (0)

Brisbane chief executive Bruno Cullen maintains the Broncos are still in the running to keep Petero Civoniceva despite signing young St George Illawarra forward Ashton Sims on a three-year deal.

The Broncos secured Sims after the 22-year-old was told he was no longer wanted after five years at the Dragons.

While the Sims deal isn't exactly going to break the Broncos' salary cap, it will have a drastic effect on what Brisbane can pay Civoniceva after the Queensland prop turned down a $900,000 three-year deal earlier this month.

The Broncos turned their attention to Sims after Civoniceva knocked them back to chase $400,000 a season.

But there is increasing speculation Civoniceva won't get near that demand or much better than what the Broncos originally offered.

It is believed the Broncos salary cap position is so tight now that Civoniceva may have to accept close to half of their original offer and rely on third party arrangements to boost his salary if he stays in Brisbane.

"We are still in discussions with Petero about his future at the club," said Cullen.

If Civoniceva does leave Brisbane, the Broncos have recruited strongly to replace him with Sims and Penrith's Joel Clinton now both confirmed for next season.

Clinton is a former Test player while the talented Sims comes with incredible experience for his age.

"Having played nearly 80 games at the age of 22, Ashton has certainly done his apprenticeship," said Cullen.

"We think he is on the verge of making a big contribution to the Brisbane Broncos club."

Sims said he chose the Broncos for the new challenge and to improve his rugby league career under master coach Wayne Bennett.

"There are two main reasons why I chose the Broncos," Sims said.

"Firstly the attraction of playing under Wayne Bennett appeals to me.

"I spoke to Wayne about things earlier this week and he really impressed me with his thoughts and knowledge of the game.

"Secondly, I am moving from Sydney because I believe a fresh start in a different state can only provide me with challenges which will hopefully bring out the best in me.

"I plan on re-assessing my goals and I really want to improve myself as a player.

"I have no doubt that Brisbane is the right environment for me to do that."

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