Su'A driven by father's tough love as he makes contract call
Off-contract Broncos forward Jaydn Su’A has a big decision to make about his future but it is the tough love in the past from his father that he credits for moulding the 80-minute player he is today.
The Broncos and South Sydney have tabled lucrative offers to the 20-year-old who wants to be a starting forward on a regular basis in 2019.
Brisbane remain confident of keeping him and satisfying that desire to be a regular starter despite their plentiful stock of back-rowers.
He became the youngest Brisbane forward to be named in the run-on side when he made his NRL debut in 2016 and ended up playing the full 80 minutes against the Wests Tigers on that occasion.
Su'A credits the five-kilometre road run through the streets of Logan, carefully mapped out by his father Daniel and then forensically monitored, with forging his endurance at a young age.
"My dad has been an inspiration and when I was young he would help me train every day on that five-kilometre run," Su’A told NRL.com
"He’d drive around and watch me run and make sure I wasn’t walking or taking any short-cuts, so he was awesome in that sense.
"The NRL is another level of fitness, but that is why I was always fit when I was younger.
"I feel like I am an 80-minute player and that is what I want to be. Playing 80 minutes the last few weeks, it has been hard. I’m not going to lie. Each week I am getting fitter and used to being fatigued."
Su’A said his contract situation "does cross your mind now and then" while adding his manager Isaac Moses was handling the finer details and he was in no hurry to make a call.
"Honestly, I love Brisbane and I would like to stay but I have to think about what is best for me and where I am going to fulfil my potential and play the best footy I can play," he said.
"I am still 20 and learning so much off Lex [Alex Glenn], Gillo [Matt Gillett] and even Milly [Anthony Milford}. I am trying to pick apart everyone’s game and bring it into my own.
"Wayne [Bennett] showed a lot of faith in me to give me my debut [in 2018] and I thank him a lot for that. I’ve come a long way since but I still feel like I have a long way to go. I don’t feel like I am anywhere near playing my best footy.”
The New Zealand-born back-rower has lived most of his life in Queensland and played in state representative sides as a junior. He is qualified to play for the Kiwis and Maroons. Queensland selectors have an eye on his progress.
"I don’t have to make a decision on [choosing alllegiances] now so, in all honesty, I haven’t thought about it," he said.
"I want to play the best footy I can for the Brisbane Broncos. This is my dream."
That dream is still being fuelled by his father's advice and guidance.
"Even today, Dad still picks apart my game. He texts me after a game and then on the weekend I’ll go and see him and we have a good discussion," Su'A said.
"If I play bad he’ll tell me and if I play good he’ll tell me I played bad, or the bad things I’ve done at least. You feel good after you’ve played well, but he keeps me grounded and humble."