As if being suspended wasn’t bad enough, Brisbane prop Adam Blair’s pain has been enhanced by the Broncos’ results while he’s been sidelined.
The New Zealand international was a key element in the eight-game winning run which lifted Brisbane to the top of the NRL ladder.
But a two-game ban for a late hit on Gold Coast halfback Kane Elgey has left Blair a frustrated spectator as the Broncos were hammered by Manly at Gosford and then lost a nailbiting clash with Canterbury last Friday.
Blair will move straight back into Brisbane’s line up for this Friday’s home clash with St George Illawarra and he’s confident he can help steady the ship for coach Wayne Bennett.
“I don’t think I’m the missing link. I think it’s just an attitude thing,” Blair said.
“I guess me being there will help a lot just with leadership and a bit of talk. Hopefully I can bring that on Friday night.”
Blair has been a crucial contributor both in attack and defence for the Broncos.
The 29-year-old is averaging 28.06 tackles per game and just a touch over 86 metres per match.
With the Dragons heading to Brisbane on a high after back-to-back wins over Newcastle and the Warriors, Blair is aware he and his teammates will need to be ready for a tough match despite star Dragons half Benji Marshall being unlikely to play due to a hamstring strain.
“You can see after their game last week against the Warriors they were down two men by halftime and they still were able to put a fair score on the Warriors,” Blair said.
“They’re coming back to where they were at the start of the year.”
Blair has also dismissed the suggestion the emotion of Justin Hodges’ retirement announcement could be used as extra motivation for the remainder of the season.
“Justin’s told us not to do it for him. That’s the kind of bloke Justin is,” he said.
“It’s best for us to worry about ourselves.”