After upping his game in 2017, North Queensland Cowboys hooker Jake Granville is ready to increase his game time.
Cowboys coach Paul Green has usually favoured a three-forward bench with a utility – in 2017 it was Ben Hampton, but the emergence of Te Maire Martin and Josh Chudleigh’s return to fitness may trigger some changes.
If Granville can turn himself into an 80-minute player, he could allow Green to slot another forward on the bench and add even more weight to a pack that already boasts three internationals, one of whom is a Dally M player of the year in Jason Taumalolo.
“I enjoyed what I did last year, I think I averaged about 60 minutes, I enjoyed that role and whatever the team needs be to do [I’ll do],” Granville said.
“It is a long season but a lot of guys play a lot more footy than me so the more footy I can play the better I can get in games and I’ve just got to keep working on that game fitness and see how I go.”
As one of the fastest over 40 metres at the club, Granville is looking forward to taking advantage of the presence of some extra size in the pack.
That now includes Jordan McLean, a newly minted international forward, as well as former Test prop Matt Scott, who is returning from an ACL injury suffered in March.
“We’ve got some big fellas in the middle there and it will be awesome to play on the back of those big guys. You’ve got to take advantage of those big guys making the yards for you and that power game,” Granville said.