MUDGEE, AUSTRALIA - FEBRUARY 29: Issac Luke of the Dragons in action during the Charity Shield NRL Trial match between the St George Illawarra Dragons and the South Sydney Rabbitohs at Glen Willow Sporting Complex on February 29, 2020 in Mudgee, Australia. (Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images)
MUDGEE, AUSTRALIA - FEBRUARY 29: Issac Luke of the Dragons in action during the Charity Shield NRL Trial match between the St George Illawarra Dragons and the South Sydney Rabbitohs at Glen Willow Sporting Complex on February 29, 2020 in Mudgee, Australia. (Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images)

Broncos snare $50k bargain to fix problem role

Broncos-bound Issac Luke says he "can't wait to rip in" as Brisbane prepare to broker a short-term, $50,000 deal following the hooker's release from St George Illawarra.

The Broncos have one spot left to fill in their full-time roster and that man shapes as Luke, who is expected to finalise a contract in the next 48 hours after officially severing ties with the Dragons.

The 33-year-old is keen to move to Brisbane for family reasons and could be pitchforked into the Broncos side for Thursday night's away clash against Newcastle at Central Coast Stadium.

 

The well-travelled Issac Luke is next headed to Brisbane.
The well-travelled Issac Luke is next headed to Brisbane.

The Broncos have already lost first-choice hooker Jake Turpin to a fractured leg and rookie rake Cory Paix is in doubt for the Knights showdown despite scans clearing him of a broken hand.

Luke played with new Broncos recruit Ben Te'o at the Rabbitohs and the pair are set to reunite at Red Hill in the coming days with Seibold confirming his interest in the 43-Test New Zealand hooker.

"There is a possibility around Issac joining us," Seibold said.

"We have to fill one more spot and Isaac's name has come across my table in the last few days.

"I spoke to Issac (on Friday) and that's the first time I have spoken to him.

"If we did sign him, it would happen pretty quickly I would assume.

Luke only played three games for the Dragons.
Luke only played three games for the Dragons.

"It's not a done deal at this stage but we're interested and we'll see how it plays out in the coming days."

Luke took to social-media on Saturday to confirm he is joining the Broncos.

"My wife has followed me through my career and through all that we always said that we will finish in Brisbane," he said.

"Brisbane Broncos gave us an opportunity to go home and we are taking it. I can't wait to rip in."

Luke played just three games for the Dragons but he will join the Broncos as one of the most accomplished players on their roster.

The tough-as-nails hooker has played 274 first-grade games during a decorated 13-year career and only a grand-final suspension robbed him of a premiership with Te'o at the Rabbitohs in 2014.

Jake Turpin is already out for an extended period.
Jake Turpin is already out for an extended period.

The youthful Broncos are crying out for toughness and experience and former Souths and Warriors schemer Luke delivers both in spades.

It is understood Luke will be placed on the minimum wage. Because half of the NRL's financial year has passed, Luke's deal at the Broncos is worth a cut-price $50,000.

Te'o has given the Broncos a positive recommendation of Luke, who at his peak was one of the best hookers in the NRL with his dynamic charges out of dummy half.

"We had two spots and Ben Te'o filled one, so with Jake Turpin out, it makes sense for us to look at Issac Luke," Seibold said.

"We could go down the route of getting a player from the Intrust Super Cup or getting a fringe player from another NRL club.

"Thankfully we got a good report on 'Paixy'. He hurt his thumb against Manly and there was a chance it may have been broken, but thankfully he is all good."

Originally published as Broncos snare $50k bargain to fix problem role



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