Ben Hunt is struggling to find his rhythm with new halves partner Corey Norman. (Photo by Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images)
Ben Hunt is struggling to find his rhythm with new halves partner Corey Norman. (Photo by Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images)

Dragons half struggling with new-look spine

ST George Illawarra's Ben Hunt admits captain Gareth Widdop's switch to fullback has made it difficult to combine with new halves partner Corey Norman.

Dragons coach Paul McGregor's decision to move Widdop from five-eighth to No.1 this season has come under fire, with the likes of Andrew Johns calling for the Englishman to return to pivot.

The criticism only got louder after the Dragons slumped to a 0-2 season start following their 34-18 NRL loss to South Sydney last week.

Hunt admits he is yet to work out how to complement Norman at five-eighth and Widdop at fullback ahead of Thursday night's NRL clash with his former club Brisbane.

"It is pretty difficult (combining with Norman), especially when you put Gaz in the mix as well," Hunt said.

"You've got the three of us all trying to create and do different things.

"You've got to work out the best time to inject yourself and the best time to step back and let the other players do their job.

"We just have to find that balance and complement each other."

Gareth Widdop has struggled in his transition to fullback so far in 2019.
Gareth Widdop has struggled in his transition to fullback so far in 2019.

Asked if he was confident Widdop would fire at fullback, Hunt said: "He's a weapon no matter where he is in the team.

"He is one of the best players I have played with. You have got to have him in your 17 somewhere.

"Whether it is six or one he is going to do a great job for us."

Hunt is confident the only way is up for the Dragons' new-look spine.

"It is coming along OK. Obviously it can be a lot better," he said.

"We have had patches where I thought we were really good and working together.

"And there have been different times in the game where we sort of fell away a bit and didn't stick to the game plan.

"They are things we have to fix up, but we are working every day to try and get a feel for each other - I think we will only get better."

Ben Hunt is primed to take on the Broncos. Picture: Getty
Ben Hunt is primed to take on the Broncos. Picture: Getty

Hunt is looking forward to earning "bragging rights" against his former club after helping the Dragons down Brisbane twice last year - including a 48-18 thumping in the 2018 elimination final.

But Hunt predicted the Dragons would line up against a very different Brisbane this year with new coach Anthony Seibold at the helm.

"We got a couple of good wins on them last year but I feel like it is completely different this year," he said.

"They have a new coach and are playing completely different football. It's kind of a fresh start for them."

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