Haas takes on task of Broncos redemption

Murray Wenzel
·2-min read

Payne Haas won't dodge the responsibility this year as a largely unchanged Brisbane squad seeks improvement from within following their worst-ever season.

Hamstrung to a degree by the player contracts he's inherited, new coach Kevin Walters has hardly tinkered ahead of his first NRL season in charge at the Broncos.

After a 2-0 start to the season, the Broncos won just once in their final 18 games to break club records for all the wrong reasons

They've returned in 2021 with David Mead, Dale Copley and John Asiata the only notable new faces and NSW Origin forward Haas is aware of the task at hand.

"The trust that Kev's put in us; we know what talent we've got here and it's a good chance for us to redeem ourselves and return to winning ways," he said.

"You can see how the boys are training; it's pretty competitive.

"The motivation here is to bring the club back to what it was and we have just left what happened last year right there and dusted."

Haas has shown plenty of his brilliant best in two full seasons at Red Hill, while Walters has asked the likes of playmaker Anthony Milford and Tevita Pangai Jnr to step up.

"Those of us that have been around a couple of years now know what to expect and Kev's going to get it out of us," Haas said.

The 21-year-old has been impressed by Walters' efforts to utilise more former Broncos, with his older brother Steve and club great Petero Civoniceva both officially added to staff under his watch.

Haas has particularly enjoyed the closer connection to Civoniceva, who he's leant on in the past for advice.

The Broncos began their second week of training since Christmas on Tuesday, with winger Corey Oates confined to the bike because of a hand injury and returning hooker Andrew McCullough running strongly after last season's serious hamstring tear.

Dropped from the side last year, Jamayne Isaako is calling the shots at fullback while 19-year-old back Tesi Nui is training in the centres.