Hunt: I learned a lot from grand final setback

Ben Hunt calls the 2015 grand final ‘a big setback’.
Ben Hunt calls the 2015 grand final ‘a big setback’.

BEN Hunt has revealed how his 2015 grand final heartbreak proved an important stepping stone in his NRL career.

Hunt endeared himself to St George Illawarra fans with a first-class display in his Dragons debut against former club Brisbane last week.

The Queensland and Australian representative signalled he was ready to make good on his massive six-year $6 million contract and capable of guiding the Red V into premiership contention.

Hunt was derided by some Broncos fans after he dropped the kick-off in extra-time of the Broncos' 2015 grand final loss, a mistake that directly led to Johnathan Thurston booting the match-winner.

Hunt bounced back to have a career-defining season in 2017, making his Queensland Origin debut and earning selection in Australia's World Cup-winning squad.

"The grand final came along and that was big setback," Hunt said.

"It's something I learned a lot from, I just have to worry about myself and the people I trust and what they really think, not the people on the outside.

"That was one of the things that got me through it."

Hunt has endured a rollercoaster career and for his first four seasons of first-grade under former Broncos coaches Ivan Henjak and Anthony Griffin, played off the bench.

He admitted that between 2010-2013, he at times carried extra weight that slowed his progress.

"I had that great year of under-20s and after that it was a bit of my own fault that I faded away a bit," Hunt said.

Ben Hunt was the toast of Dragons fans in round one.
Ben Hunt was the toast of Dragons fans in round one.

"I put on a few extra kilos, found myself playing that utility role, not really playing a lot of minutes.

"We did have a couple of good halves ahead of us like Darren Lockyer and Peter Wallace.

"I finally got my chance and I took it with both hands."

Topics:  ben hunt brisbane broncos nrl2018 st george illawarra dragons

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