Brisbane Broncos wingers Corey Oates and Jamayne Isaako say they haven’t heard anything in regards to whispers that James Roberts may join Wayne Bennett at South Sydney next season.
Speculation grew after Benji Marshall called for Roberts to replace Greg Inglis in the Rabbitohs side. Marshall said that South Sydney should be given $1.5 million in salary cap relief to compensate for the loss of Inglis, and the former Bronco believes that Roberts should be the target of South Sydney.
“I have no problem with it (salary cap relief). If he’s not there playing, why can’t they spend that money and get someone else? And I’d be going after James Roberts,” Marshall told Fox Sports.
“Wayne, for a starter, took Jimmy after he had a few issues and pulled him back on the straight and narrow and I just feel like his relationship with Wayne could get that (deal) over the line.”
Speaking at a press conference this afternoon, Oates and Isaako confirmed they were left in the dark in regards to the matter.
“I wouldn’t have a clue,” Oates said.
“You hear talks about it, but we wouldn’t have a clue what’s going on.
“We just want him back playing for us, playing his best football and doing whatever he can to get back as soon as possible.”
Isaako was more of the same.
“I’ve been seeing a few articles but I haven’t really asked him personally. I wouldn’t know too much about his relationship there but hopefully he hasn’t,” the NRL rookie of the year said.
“He’s a big key player for us at the Broncos and hopefully he’s not in talks with the Rabbitohs.”
Roberts showed good form for the Broncos in 2018. He notched up 22 games last season, as well as earning selection for New South Wales in the State of Origin, playing in all three matches.
As far as Oates is concerned, there is no doubting the talent that the 26-year-old possesses.
“He’s got unbelievable talent. hes strong, hes fast, hes athletic, hes got great feet. To have those types of players in your team is a massive bonus for anyone,” he said.
“He’s a massive contribution to our team and it would be great to have him back as soon as possible.”
Roberts is currently fighting his way back from an achilles tendon injury. He has been sidelined indefinitely by the injury.