Broncos breaking in new talent
By GREG WHITE
FOURTEEN of the brightest rugby league prospects in Group 2 earmarked by the Brisbane Broncos for bigger things held their final test session for 2007 at Pacific Bay Resort on Wednesday.
All engaged in the Elite Player Development Program the squad were supervised by former NRL star Paul Green and Broncos talent co-ordinators, Peter Nolan and Andrew Croll.
"This is the sixth and final session for the year and we'll do individual body tests today and set the lads a program to follow over summer," Nolan said.
"When they come back here to the Wallaby Training Centre in February we'll do the same tests and compare the data.
"Yes, there is an expectation there will be improvement."
The Program is headed locally by leading junior coaches Anthony Field (Nambucca Heads) and Dean Jarrett (Macksville) who both have footballing prot?g?s in the scheme.
Field has guided Tyrone Ussher-Kinnear and Taylor Hamilton-Giggins into the first grade ranks with the Roosters while Jarrett, coach of Macksville under-18's in next Sunday's grand final, has team members Jesse McEwen and Jason Tutt participating.
"The scholarships vary within the group but even those who are on part-time contracts have a big influence rubbing off in the teams they play for," Field advised.
Brandon Lee, Matt Archer and Luke Uikelotu have full contracts with the Broncos and follow a much more intricate schedule of activities.
"They go to Brisbane regularly and get the full sport science treatment," Field added.
"The Broncos film their movement and drills on DVD and use this to explain the good things they do or fix any problems."
Field said one of last season's graduates, Michael Spence of Coffs Comets, has just been elevated to the next level by the Broncos.
"Michael has really impressed Wayne Bennett and he's been named in the squad for the national Under-20's competition beginning in 2008," he said.
"That's a major step forward and the last stop before making the first grade team."