Sam Thaiday is doing the team thing.
Sam Thaiday is doing the team thing. GETTY IMAGES

Broncos veteran happy to play sacrificial Sam

AN UNSELFISH Sam Thaiday is ready to turn back time as Brisbane's new super-sub to help reap the full benefits of a reduction in interchanges to eight per game in 2016.

Brisbane coach Wayne Bennett clarified Thaiday's position on the Broncos bench for game one against Parramatta tonight, saying it was not a demotion, but rather a sacrifice for his teammates.

"Sam is typical of many players at the Broncos over a long period of time," Bennett said.

"The total team player is one who will take any role offered him. It's not about self glorification, it's about the team.

"Darren Lockyer was a great example of that when I moved him from fullback (a position where he was the best in the world) to five-eighth.

"I needed one of the senior players to take that role (as a "super-sub"), and Sam was happy to do it.
"Once Sam goes on, he won't be coming off."

Thaiday told Australian Regional Media he launched his career with Brisbane off the bench and really enjoyed the role.

"I like to call it more of an impact player," he said.

"Who knows how the game is going to change with this new eight interchange rule - it may make it quicker and tire out some of the bigger forwards.

"If I can get some quick play-the-balls for Benny Hunt and Anthony Milford, it will help us score points."
Parramatta, who captured the Auckland Nines last month, will hope star recruit Kieran Foran is fit to play after battling a hamstring complaint.

Bennett said he expected Parramatta to try to engage Brisbane in the middle of the field, and be very competitive with former Bronco Corey Norman and Foran calling the shots.

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