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Broncos halfback Brodie Croft.

Broncos playmaker Anthony Milford has been cleared to face Parramatta in the season opener on March 12, leaving the race for the No.7 jersey wide open between Brodie Croft and Tom Dearden.

In a strong indication of how the team is set to line up, Milford trained alongside Croft in the halves on Tuesday as the battle for the halfback spot took another turn at Red Hill with Dearden part of the opposing side in the session.

Dearden and Croft were solid in last week's trial against the Cowboys in Redcliffe but the Broncos' second half, where they conceded 28 unanswered points, gave Walters a timely reminder of the work needed to do. 

Part of Walters' job is settling on a halfback to partner Milford, who hasn't played a game since August.

After falling short of receiving a clearance before last week's trial, the 26-year-old wasn't too keen to weigh into the halfback selection debate leading into round one.

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"It's Kevvie's headache to have, not mine," Milford said.

"They both do the same thing … steer the ship around and get the boys where they want them.

"Kevvie's pretty hard on the halves, making sure we're doing the right lines and right calls.

"Whoever steps up in the No.7 position will do a big job for us. I thought the boys took a real step forward against the Cows in the trial."

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Milford, considered one of the game's most dangerous players, was hampered by a hamstring issue last year, while his form dipped to coincide with the club's woes.

Off-contract at season's end, the Broncos' 2021 campaign looms as a critical time in Milford's career with the playmaker on marquee money at the club.

"I'd like to stay [but] again that's out of my control," Milford said.

"What is in my control is how I perform on a week-to-week basis. It's a big year for myself. I'm just looking forward to the challenge and whatever comes my way I'll take it with two hands.

"Getting the wooden spoon hurt all the boys, but especially the boys in the key positions.

"Our jerseys are on the line each week and we've got boys pushing for spots regularly."

Milford added Walters had made an impact on his own game since returning to the club.

The pair worked together in 2015 when Walters followed Wayne Bennett to the Broncos.

It led to a grand final appearance, and while that prospect seems a fair distance away for the rebuilding outfit, getting the best out of Milford remains the key for the halves to fire.

"There's a lot of [personal] improvement areas – defence and making sure I'm in the game," Milford said.

"I think [Walters] brings in a lot of the fundamentals of being a half and making sure we don't take out our running game.

"He knows I'm on my game when I'm running the ball … I just need to bring that. It's been a long time since I played so I'm dying to play."

Acknowledgement of Country

Queensland Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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