Broncos icon Karmichael Hunt has acknowledged that emerging prop Benjamin Te Kura may need to patiently await his entry to the NRL, whilst simultaneously extolling the teenager’s potential. “He’s got the makings of the complete package,” shared Hunt.
Te Kura, playing under Hunt’s guidance for Souths Logan in the Queensland Cup, has stood out from the beginning. Initially starting the season as a bench player, he scored in his initial four games as a starting player.
Ever since, Te Kura’s form has been on an upswing. He’s been showcasing an average of 158 running metres and five tackle breaks per game in the last three matches, further sweetened by two tries.
Currently under contract with the Broncos concluding at the end of 2025, Te Kura appears primed for a quick ascend to the senior side, specifically to cover the gaps left by Tom Flegler (Dolphins) and Keenan Palasia (Titans).
Hunt, however, tempers excitement with a reality check suggesting the young player is not yet ready for confronting the NRL’s elite middles, despite Te Kura’s promising attributes. Furthermore, Hunt encourages the young Magpie to be physically prepared for the intensity of the game.
“That’s a question for (Broncos coach) Kevvie (Walters) and the coaching staff, but from my perspective as his Cup coach I think I’m a back so I have a real appreciation for what the middles do in terms of their output on the field, but I’ve got no subjective experience,” Hunt stated.
He went on, “You can put a 17-, 18-year-old back into a footy match and they can survive out there, but whether a young 18-year-old can do the same in the front row I’m not too sure. He’s got a bit of filling out to do; he’s definitely got a lot more maturing physically to do, but in the next year or two I’m looking forward to seeing how he progresses.”
Where Hunt sees a promising future for Te Kura, whose skills are maturing to match his strength, he urges senior forwards of the Broncos to guide him towards success.
Drawing on his own experience, Hunt reiterated the impact that senior players – like Darren Lockyer, Justin Hodges, and Shaun Berrigan – had on his own progression during his early career.
“Everyone around you can be an influence and have an impact if you allow them, good or bad,” Hunt reflected. “I’m starting to see that, especially of late. His performances as a starting middle have been terrific. He’s almost got the makings of the complete package in a footballer.”