Burns to spark a Redfern revival

That spark.

RUN, RABBIT, RUN: Bears junior Braidon Burns at Rabbitohs pre-season training. Photo: GETTY IMAGES

It’s something South Sydney lacked last year throughout a severe premiership hangover after their 2014 triumph, but Coonamble Bears productBraidon Burns believes he could be the man to provide the Rabbitohs with a much needed lift in 2017.

That spark.

The former Penrith Panther made the move from Sydney’s west to Redfern this season, seeking an opportunity that never arrived at the foot of the mountains.

At just 20 years of age, time isn’t an issue for Burns, but the rangy outside back is hopeful he’ll get a crack at the NRL in the early stages of the season.

He’ll press for that claim at this weekend’s Auckland Nines.

“I’ve been loving it,” Burns said.

“I didn’t really ever get a look in at the Panthers. It’s been a huge learning curve making the move over to Souths, but it’s been great.

“I’d love to make my debut in the first 10 rounds, get in there early. If I can give the team a few quick play-the-balls and get them on the front foot, a bit of a spark, then I think I’ve done my job.”

Departing for Auckland on Thursday morning, Burns said the 2015 champions weren’t going to make up the numbers, like some other NRL clubs have publicly admitted to.

“We’re going over to win it,” he said.

“We’ve really got into the processes of it all this week and we’re keen to get stuck into it.”

Burns revealed he’d trained at both fullback and wing for the Rabbitohs at pre-season training.

With Queensland and Australian representative Greg Inglis a moral for the Rabbits’ No.1 jumper come round one, a spot on the wing is a more likely avenue for Burns to make his debut.

The outside back, in the mould of Blake Ferguson –another Western Rams product –said he’d been impressed with the leadership of the side, which has been bolstered by the recruitment of NSW incumbent and Wests Tigers hooker Robbie Farah.

Premiership-winning coach Michael Maguire was also a key figure in the squad.

“He’s definitely process driven. The boys all buy into it though and we feed off it,” Burns said.

“They’ve all been impressive. Sam Burgess and Greg Inglis are the obvious leaders and do a lot of the talking, but a guy like Damien Cook, he’s the fittest at the club and pushes everyone for more.”

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