One of the NRL’s big boppers, Melbourne Storm prop Jesse Bromwich, reckons next year’s rule changes will force frontrowers to shed the kilos so they can play more minutes.
Kiwi international Bromwich, who tips the scales at 115kg, says cutting the number of substitutions from 10 to eight and bringing a shot clock for scrums and drop-outs will mean stamina will play a much bigger role for the game’s heavy hitters.
“Some of the big fellas might have to trim down a little bit. I think I need to lose a couple (of kilos),” he told NZ Newswire.
In Napier for the Storm’s ‘home’ match against St George Illawarra at McLean Park on Saturday, the first NRL match to be staged in the city, the 26-year-old said the rule changes will lift the excitement levels.
“It’ll bring the little man back into the game and make it more entertaining.
“That’s the way the game is going and you’ve got to adapt to the changes,” he said.
Rated one of the best props in the game, Bromwich is this season averaging close to 160 metres a game with the ball and more than 60 minutes a game.
He’s managed a 76-minute game in the past and while he can’t see himself lasting a whole game, he says some frontrowers will fancy the challenge of playing the full 80 minutes.
“There will be some frontrowers who probably can and the change will suit them.
“My fitness is probably going to have to get a bit higher which isn’t great news.”
After last week’s 52-10 demolition of Penrith, the Storm are in the play-off spots, while the Dragons have lost six in a row to slip outside the top eight.
Bromwich is only too aware the side they beat 12-4 in first round will be eager to get back to winning ways with the number of games remaining fast disappearing.
“They’re starting to get desperate now. We’re getting to the back end of the season now so if they really want to cement a spot in the eight they’re going to have to start winning games.
They’re definitely up for a big game this week and it’s going to be a tough one.