One of them was Origin’s man of the match, the other scored the first hat-trick for NSW in 15 years – and the turbo-charged brothers are only just getting started.
The pressure was on in last Sunday’s game two for the misfiring Blues, which was soundly answered by the Trbojevic brothers.
The 38-6 win was elevated by the Manly pair, who combined for 251 metres gained and 3 tries. Jake also played a remarkable 73 minutes in the centres, amassing 24 tackles to compliment his brothers hat-trick.
Their form on the big stage mixed with their form in the NRL and age factor has seen the stock price on the Trbojevic brothers rise substantially.
According to The Sydney Morning Herald, the brothers are expected to be the NRL’s next million-dollar men, with their current three-year deals running until the end of 2020 going for $2.1 million (Tom) and $2.7 million (Jake).
With rival clubs being able to table offers from November, interest in the brothers is peaking as their prime age and form could attract big money deals.
Fitler, who was highly questioned for the dropping of Latrell Mitchell after his horror show in game I came out full praise for man of the match Jake Trbojevic. Fitler told Channel 9 “He gives us all our shape.
“He makes it easier for everyone when he’s got the ball. You see the way he plays for Manly week in and week out, the game means so much to him.
“He just doesn’t know how to have a bad game when he’s got good players around him”
With most experts agreeing with Fitler in rightful praise of the brothers, agent Paul Sutton has come out to say that they should listen to big money offers if it suits their future ambitions.
“Tom and Jake… would love to be Manly boys for their careers, but you’d also be naive to think there wouldn’t be any interest from elsewhere” Sutton told The Sydney Morning Herald.
“If things panned out where they couldn’t [stay together], they’d have to consider it [moving clubs].”
With Daly Cherry Evans being the centre piece of the historic club and both brothers likely to grab a larger slice of the pie if they are to stay, you would assume if Manly went another three years without silverware the cap space from letting one of the brothers go would be a smarter investment moving forward.
The age factor for both boys would see potential long-term deals come their way with over 7 years left of prime football in them. Barring serious injuries you would expect the consistency of performance to remain at a high standard as they develop into 2 of the games greats in the coming years.
Mal Meninga also came out in support for the Trbojevic brothers after working with them for the Kangaroos as well as playing a role in giving Jake the nod over Tom for man of the match.
“He’s become a smarter player [Jake], he knows how to get through a game now, and in a way he’s changing the way No.13’s play.
“I think all clubs are aspiring to have a ball-playing No.13 with the way the game is evolving… He can be a match winner through the middle.
“And with Tommy, you just play him. I think he enjoys playing centre, I think he thinks he’s a centre at times,” Melinga told The Sydney Morning Herald.
Only time will tell for the brothers who are living the high-life of public recognition and reward for their efforts, but keeping them locked in long term at Manly could be a struggle. Game three is in eight days and they figure to play key roles in NSW’s bid to win the series.