Benji Marshall was the greatest thing to happen to the Broncos, says Corey Oates

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    Veteran playmaker Benji Marshall’s arrival at Brisbane has been the “greatest thing to happen” to the Broncos halves, Corey Oates says.

    Broncos winger Oates now hopes Wests Tigers-bound Marshall one day returns to Brisbane as an assistant after watching the likes of Ben Hunt, Anthony Milford and Kodi Nikorima blossom under the ex-premiership playmaker this year.

    Oates said it was sad to hear Marshall had signed a one year deal with the Tigers for 2018, reuniting him with the club that launched his career.

    Marshall, 32, has played nine games since linking with Brisbane this year but Oates said the veteran’s impact at the club could not be measured on the stat sheet.

    “You could not have asked for a greater role model for our young halves,” Oates said.

    “For him to be able to share his knowledge is probably the greatest thing that has happened to them.”

    But Oates hoped Marshall would be back in Broncos colours on the support staff after witnessing his impact this season.

    “He’s had a great career and it is still going but I am sure he will have some sort of role in football here or in Sydney after his playing days,” he said.

    Oates said Brisbane could not begrudge Marshall a Tigers homecoming.

    The former Kiwi captain played 201 games for the Tigers from 2003-13 including their famous 2005 premiership win.

    “I think his influence has shown on our team this year,” Oates said.

    “He will be dearly missed but we wish him the best at the Tigers.”

    © AAP 2017

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