TOWNSVILLE, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 09: David Fifita of the Broncos looks on during the round 22 NRL match between the North Queensland Cowboys and the Brisbane Broncos at 1300SMILES Stadium on August 9, 2018 in Townsville, Australia. (Photo by Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images)

After a number of bumper debut seasons last year from a host of young stars, take a look at who I believe will kick on in 2019 and cement themselves as a genuine NRL star.


6. Honourable Mentions

Corey Allan, Scott Drinkwater, Reed Mahoney, Bronson Xerri, Patrick Carrigan.


MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – AUGUST 31: Scott Drinkwater of the Storm runs with the ball during the round 25 NRL match between the Melbourne Storm and the Penrith Panthers at AAMI Park on August 31, 2018 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Dodge/Getty Images)


  1. Cameron Murray like Victor Radley did not debut last season, they both had their debut in 2017. Radley has already won a comp and like Murray both have been under the scrutiny watchful eye of Brad Fittler and the NSW selectors. Another big year from either one of these two could see them in the NSW team this season with the massive possibility of a vacant lock position of De Belin.

    Brisbane’s lacked a bit of forward size a few years ago but with all these new young large forwards coming through, it looks like Brisbane has a future dangerous sizable pack building.

    The other player I like is elusive runner Scott Drinkwater. 💪🐔👍

  2. Dragons are in a weird position this year. They have a really good forward pack and good half options but they also have a lot of really good young talent that deserve a crack at NRL but are on expiring contracts. Matt Dufty, Jai Feild, Tristan Sailor, Reece Robson, Blake Lawrie to name a few. Robson in particular is a difficult one. He’s stuck behind an above average Cam McInnes but he’s shone at junior level so much and could be a starter elsewhere. Fullback is another spot. Feild, Dufty, Sailor and Lomax all want the Number 1 jersey and to be playing first grade but it’s likely 1 or 2 will leave in search of regular game time.

  3. No mate, Russell is having a sponge bath, after what the old stirrer did to me last time. I make sure I always log off after leaving my room.

    I am just correcting the author Angus that Murray did not have a Bumper debut season last year. 😎

  4. If I was selecting our team, I would start off with Dufty fullback, with Widdop and Lomax in the centres, Hunt 5/8 and Norman halfback. Dufty would know he has to perform to hold his spot and get a new contract. I think Lomax and Widdop would be a much better pair of centres than Aitken and Lafai. If Dufty isn’t our answer for the number 1 jersey, then we should be looking at giving either Lomax or Field a run there. The best I have seen Norman play, was when he was playing halfback and running the team. Hunt at 5/8 would allow him to play his running game and still be a playmaker, without the main play making duties.

    I think if Field is going to crack first grade, he should be ready by this year, but where to play him?

    I would like to see Robson get some decent game time off the bench to guage if we should be looking to hold on to him and let McInnes go or not.

    Sailor has impressed me on highlights reels, but some say that his defence is nowhere near good enough for first grade. He looks like a 5/8 to me.

  5. David Fifita looks a future superstar in the making and the same applies to Haas.

    Lomax looks like the best outside back Saints have had come through their system since Gasnier, but if he is playing outside of Aitken, he probably won’t get much opportunity to show off his talent. Mary should start him at right centre, but will probably go with Aitken right centre and Lomax outside him. Aitken doesn’t set up his winger.

    If Luciano Leilua gets to play big minutes, I am predicting him to have a breakout season.

  6. I think Aiken has to be in the centres, I’m a big fan. His early last season last year, he was in origin contention but obviously fell off but he is a good play when in form and in the right mind set, plus I don’t think Widdop would make much sense at centre.

    1. Widdop
    2. Pereira
    3. Aiken
    4. Lomax
    5. Lafai/Dufty
    6. Norman
    7. Hunt

    Hard to see Feild and Robson getting much time in that backline and with McInnes at hooker. And for Sailor he’s behind a lot of players if he wants a crack. I think Robson and Lomax are your best young players and it’ll be interesting to see who stays and who goes

  7. These days old chap, the centres are on different sides of the field and both centres feed their winger💪🐔👍

  8. Broncos are building really nicely through their forward pack, with a lot of young talent coming through. I also think what goes unnoticed is that they also have (IMO) their future spine set up aswell. I think Nikorima and Milford are two good halves, do I think they’ll ever be good enough to win a premiership together? Maybe not. I think Bronx should keep one, being Milford who could easily slot in at 1 once Boyd goes. Young Dearden and Tanah have the makings of being a great halves combination. I also think they have their future hooker in young Paix and Niu would just have to bide his time on the wing to snag the 1. It’s a shame they couldn’t hold on to that big boy Tino who’s at the storms, he would’ve been scary next to the likes of Payne, Fifita, Su’a etc. but of course you can’t keep em all

  9. I know that centres are on different sides of the field these day. I also know that wingers are supposed to feed their wingers, but Aitken doesn’t and shouldn’t be in our team at centre. If Lomax is outside of Aitken, then he will be on the wing.

  10. That was supposed to be I also know that centres are supposed to feed their wingers, but Aitken doesn’t and shouldn’t be in our team at centre.

  11. Yeah I think Milford back to fullback will be a great move but I can see Issako competing with him and likely taking that spot. But atleast things are looking up for the broncos. Lots of young exciting players and real first team opportunities.

  12. No way can they win together mate, two running halves paired together is a disaster, Cronk is the best conductor on a football field possibly all time and steered the Roosters to a premiership with ONE friggin arm, I’d sell Kodi or Anthony for a guy with one arm who could steer his side to victory.

  13. Just want to ask why you wouldn’t go with your best 5/8th , Widdop at 5/8th. Have him there for the time he’s at the in at least.

  14. That’s why the Broncos will most likely go with O’Sullivan at halfback this year. Didn’t he already win the award for the best trainer in the off season up there?
    He will certainly get the chance at half in the trial games.

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