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Feeling refreshed following an off-season trip to the US, Titans star AJ Brimson has begun his second week of pre-season training with a renewed energy and a desire to help the team make it to the finals.

“I was in America for five weeks, so I gained a bit of weight and had a lot of fun, so it was good,” Brimson joked.

“But, I'm alright; the body's going alright so far, so hopefully I can continue to be on the field.”

Admitting his most recent season was a ‘weird’ one, where he was hampered by injuries to his hamstrings and a torn oblique, but also impressing enough in his time on the field to earn an Origin recall for Queensland, Brimson once again faces a challenge to remain in his preferred fullback position, with new coach Des Hasler yet to make a call on where he will play.

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Cheekily leaning into the recent reports of tensions between himself and Jayden Campbell – with the two teammates hamming it up on their social media – both key fullback candidates bring their own skills and strengths to the position, as does Keano Kini, who has returned to training after spending time in Kiwi camp.

“It's pretty awkward at the moment as I've been saying … we don't really talk too much out here, just kind of death stares and that,” Brimson quipped.

“We both put our hand up to play on the wing so Keano can play fullback anyway, so I think it'll work itself out.”

However, in seriousness, given Brimson’s versatility – with him adept at filling in at centre or at five-eighth, where he spent a bulk of the 2022 season – while he will be guaranteed spot in the team, the Runaway Bay Seagulls junior maintained he felt his body was in good shape and would be able to withstand the particular rigours of fullback, despite a potential to elongate his career with a positional switch.

“That's my favourite sport, but Des is the big dog and Des can pick the team,” Brimson said.

“Whatever team he wants, I think he's going to pick whatever he (thinks is) going to give us the best chance of winning the comp, so I'll back him, whatever he does.

“At the moment, I'm kind of training anywhere, just trying to fill in numbers … (but) I'll be open to (playing in the centres). Obviously, I'll have to kind of learn it in this pre-season, but I am open to doing that, so see what happens.

“But I'm also confident I can play another five-to-10 years at fullback, 80 minutes every week, but we'll see what happens.

“I've had a few injuries, (but) every time I have injuries, I come back and I feel 100%, so it's not like I'm worried about my hamstrings or previous injuries, like my oblique or anything like that.

“I'm coming this pre-season feeling good, so it doesn't really take a toll on me.

"It's just more missing the games when I am injured, so I'm not too worried about long-term footy.”

AJ Brimson at pre-season training while coach Des Hasler watches on.
AJ Brimson at pre-season training while coach Des Hasler watches on. ©Gold Coast Titans Media

However, after a disrupted 2023 season where he was only able to feature in 14 games for his club, Brimson was looking forward finding more consistency. 

“It was a bit of a weird year, I don't really feel like it was a good year for me, but obviously still grateful to play Origin and that sort of stuff,” Brimson said.

“I'm confident this year to have a bigger and better year.

“I love playing for the Titans and living on the Gold Coast, so I'm kind of happy to play anywhere.

“I just want to play finals footy.”

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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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