Claver class shining in league stars
THE chance to make amends for a grand final defeat by a group of Kiwis was an unexpected but pleasant surprise for Brett Greinke.
Springfield resident Greinke was a late call-up to the Junior Kangaroos team, which takes on the Junior Kiwis on Sunday in Auckland.
Greinke expects to come off the bench into the back row, a fortnight after he led the Brisbane Broncos under 20s in their Holden Cup grand final loss to the NZ Warriors.
"I can't believe it still," he said.
"It was very unexpected. My goal this year was to try and crack the Queensland 20's team.
"Making the grand final was the biggest goal but I thought the Junior Kangaroos was too far out of my sights."
Greinke admits captaining the Broncos 20s in a grand final, where he was instrumental in helping almost pull off a miraculous comeback win "probably didn't hurt," his selection prospects.
He will join Broncos teammate and fellow St Peter Claver College graduate Joe Ofahengaue in the Aussie team.
Ofahengaue has been named player of the season for the national under 20s comp.
They are not the only recent SPCC graduates impressing at the moment however.
Anthony Milford played in the Australian Prime Minister's XIII's 34-16 defeat of Papua New Guinea in Kokopo on Sunday.
Tautau Moga, meanwhile, has been selected in the Samoa squad for the upcoming Four Nations tournament, starting at Suncorp Stadium on October 25.
Moga left SPCC at the end of 2010, a year before Milford and Greinke and now plays for the North Queensland Cowboys in the NRL. Ofahengaue is the youngest, finishing school in 2012.
With Milford moving to Brisbane from the Canberra Raiders there will be a Broncos reunion for three of them when pre-season training begins.
"It's going to be awesome," said former SPCC school captain Greinke.
"Tony has been here the last couple of weeks. We grew up together and played club footy against each other."
Greinke has a contract with the Broncos next year, when he will no longer be eligible for the under 20s.
He doesn't expect to be part of the Broncos NRL squad in 2014 however, unlike Milford and possibly Ofahengaue.
Instead, he reckons he will spend a year at one of the Broncos' Queensland Cup feeder clubs as he gets used to playing against men.
"It is a step up physically," he said of leaving under 20s.
"I'm hoping to put on a few kilos."
At 188cm and 103kg he is hardly undersize.
But Greinke is looking to use 2015 to prepare for what he hopes will be an eventual step up to the NRL.
"I haven't got a timeframe," he said.
"I'm more worried about pre-season. I've just got to tick the boxes and do what's expected."