Oates wins Broncos award, signs new deal

·2-min read

Brisbane winger Corey Oates says he is not fazed by signing yet another one-year extension and is backing himself to continue the NRL form that led to him winning the club's player's player award.

Oates had a career-best season in 2022 after his future was in the balance at the start of the year. His extension was announced by the Broncos hours before the club's annual presentation night.

The 27-year-old said he would have ideally preferred a longer-term offer but he wasn't kicking stones about his one-year deal.

"You'd always like longer but to be honest it has never bothered me in the past," Oates said.

"I have done two or three of those one-year deals now and it doesn't seem to have gone against me.

"I just wanted to get (the deal) done. Every time I have done it I have done it with confidence. I just have to back myself.

"The next 12 months for me is sorted and I can just worry about my footy."

In his previous two seasons Oates had scored just six tries and had been in and out of the team due to form and injuries. The Broncos finished last in 2020 and 14th in 2021, before improving to ninth on the ladder this year.

This season Oates scored a career-best 20 tries, only behind South Sydney winger Alex Johnston (30), and earned a recall to Queensland's State of Origin side where he had a strong game in the 12-10 series-deciding win.

He racked up an average of 169m per NRL game, making 79 tackle busts and 18 line breaks.

Oates said his form turnaround was "all about listening, doing the extras, putting in the hard work and doing it every day" after two underwhelming campaigns.

"I knew last year I still had it," he said.

"The year before took the confidence out of a lot of people. I was confident last year but never really got an opportunity, but that is my fault.

"I can only blame myself for what happened last year and the year before. If I didn't put in the hard work and turn it around it would have been the same story."

Oates has often said that he wants to be a one-club man. He now has 118 tries in his 192 appearances for the Broncos and was clearly moved when accepting the Gary Balkin Award as player's player.

"I am very humbled to get it," Oates said.

"It's a really good achievement for me, with this award being voted on by the boys. Who says you don't need wingers?"