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After my Melbourne Storm best-ever team, I thought I would try the Brisbane Broncos as they are celebrating 30 years in the national competition.
Over their 30-year history, the Broncos they have won six premierships from seven attempts, remain the last team to go back-to-back, and are the only team to win the Super League premiership.
They have produced some of the best players the game has ever seen, including one immortal (more should follow) and, with long-term coach Wayne Bennett, the Broncos have always been a stickler for a quality side.
This is who I think their best 17 are.
1, Fullback: Darren Lockyer
Not an easy choice to kick things off as Lockyer could have easily been picked at five-eighth, but I placed him at fullback. Simply one of the best players to ever don the jersey is the first pick for this side.
2 and 5, Wingers: Wendell Sailor and Lote Tuquri
Two of the best wingers the Broncos and the game have ever seen. Big Dell changed the appearance of wingers forever, while Tuquri was one of the best fast men in the game.
They were an awesome combination that earned the Broncos the 2000 premiership. Even though both men jumped ship to rugby union, their speed and skill for the team were unmatched. It’s a pity they jumped ship, as the Broncos could have easily won more titles with thi pairing.
3 and 4, Centres: Steve Renouf and Justin Hodges
Simply put, it was hard to go past these two – it’s just a pity that they never played together. Try-scoring machine Renouf was the original centre for the club, with Hodges being his successor.
Skill, strength and speed were the basis for these two producing some of the best tries the game has ever seen. Renouf’s 1992 grand final try is surely evidence of this.
6, Five-eighth: Wally Lewis (c)
I could’ve gone with Lockyer or Kevin Walters, but who can go past ‘The King’ – the greatest player ever in the game.
Although Lewis was one of the few men not to win a premiership with the club, there is little doubt that without the contributions of the great man, the club would not have been as successful as it was.
It would be difficult to leave him out of the 17.
7, Halfback: Allan Langer
Seriously, who else was a going to pick? The Prince of the club takes his rightful place beside his King. Langer was a tremendous player and I am yet to see any halfback since produce the talent Langer did week in and out.
With the possible exception of Andrew Johns or Peter Sterling, pretty much the best halfback the game has ever seen.
8 and 10, Props: Glenn Lazarus and Petero Civoniceva
Staying consistent with my best-ever NRL team, these two players are again chosen for the upfront duties of the team.
I was surprised to see in the Broncos’ team of the century, chosen in 2007, that they went for the combination of Shane Webcke and Petero, benching Lazarus.
Well, as I said previously, the ‘brick with eyes’ is the first selection every time for any team and I am sticking with that. Same with Petero.
9, Hooker: Kerrod Walters
The best hooker the club has ever produced is an easy selection for this team. Winning the ’92 and ’93 grand finals, Walters was an important part of club’s early days, helping them become a real contender.
He is also the longest-serving hooker at the club.
11 and 12, Second Row: Gorden Tallis and Brad Thorn
This combination of brute force sent the opposition into a house of horrors. The ‘raging bull’ and Thorn were a part of the 2000 premiership and dominated the duties for Queensland as well. These two powerhouses are an easy choice for this squad.
13, Lock: Corey Parker
Parker was a rare talent in the game, a lock forward that could perform the duties of a front rower, pass like a halfback and kick a goal. The highest points scorer for the club is a must-have inclusion for this team.
14: Kevin Walters
Could not go past Walters, he is the most successful player at the club. Walters was part of five of Brisbane’s titles; ’92, ’93, ’97, ’98 as well as 2000 – where he was captain.
If not for Wally Lewis, he would have easily been selected at five-eighth.
15: Shane Webcke
The perfect fill in for the go forward of the side, what more needs to be said?
16: Tony Carroll
Carroll was a great player for the club whether in the front or backline. As a member that won four premierships with the club (’97, ’98, ’00, ’06), it would be a pretty big injustice to leave him out.
17: Sam Thaiday
A Broncos favourite for the last generation and a hard to miss choice.
Well that’s my picks for the Broncos side, do you agree? What changes would you make?