Opacic eyeing swift return

06 January 2018 21:49:34 GMTPlus11

Tom Opacic is hungry to make an impact for Brisbane Broncos next season, after a frustrating year in 2017.

Now after waiting a year he may have the chance to grab the team's centre spot.

Opacic looked to have broken through at the end of the 2016 campaign when he played eight of Brisbane's last nine games, including a semi-final against North Queensland.

But having put a decent run together he got hit with a double whammy. He was already carrying a shoulder problem into the Cowboys clash but then injured his opposite joint and ended up having two shoulder reconstructions straight after the season.

Opacic never ended up having a look last season as he was first kept out by rehab and then saw recruit Tautau Moga show form that made it impossible for him to be left out.

After having that taste of it (in 2016), it makes you more hungry.

Tom Opacic

"It is a bit better this year - I have had a great off-season, had a bit of a break and am now right back into it," he said after returning to training on Friday.

"Pre-season is your whole preparation for the season and I really had none of that last year."

The 23-year-old hopes he can win back his place in the side, with Moga having moved on to Newcastle and new signing Jack Bird unlikely to be ready for round one.

"There is definitely an opportunity there," he said. "That's what I do out here at training - get myself as fit as I can, get ready to play well in the trials and give myself the best chance I can. After having that taste of it (in 2016), it makes you more hungry."

Brisbane are 5001.00 to win the 2018 Grand Final. The Broncos are 1.01 to finish in the top eight.

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