Code-hopping star Karmichael Hunt says he has a point to prove in his return to the NRL and spoke of his desire to make the Brisbane Broncos a premiership force again.

In his first interview since returning to the Broncos on Monday, Hunt said his NRL comeback was no gimmick and he was pushing to play first grade as soon as he is eligible.

Hunt has signed a train-and-trial contract with the Broncos, 12 years after he quit the NRL to embark on a trailblazing career with the AFL's Gold Coast Suns and then Super Rugby.

Watch The 2021 NRL Telstra Premiership Live & On-Demand with No Ad-Breaks During Play. New to Kayo? Try 14-Days Free Now >

Karmichael Hunt hasn’t played in the NRL for 12 years.
Karmichael Hunt hasn’t played in the NRL for 12 years.

He will be allowed to play in the NRL from Round 11 and is aiming to be selected by Broncos coach Kevin Walters as soon as possible.

At 34 and having been out of the game for so long, Hunt understands people will question the merits of his comeback and the impact he could have on the Broncos in the modern version of the NRL.

But he is deadly serious about making his fairytale NRL return a success and helping the Broncos fight back from the abyss after collecting last year's wooden spoon.

"It's a massive opportunity," Hunt told News Corp.

"If anyone has followed my career and understands me, I don't take things up that I don't want to do or believe I can do.

"For me to accept the opportunity to come back to Red Hill, compete for a position and give my knowledge…I want it just as much as anyone else would want it.

"I turn up and try to earn my stripes every day. That's not going to change. I want it just as much as I've always wanted it.

Hunt has been impressive for Souths-Logan.
Hunt has been impressive for Souths-Logan.

"I always feel like I've got stuff to prove and things in my game I need to get better at.

"It's really no different to if I was at the Waratahs. I go into a season with the mentality to get better.

"The situation now is that I'm coming back to a game I haven't played in 12 years at age 34. Externally, people will think of those variables a bit more but for me it's the same mentality.

"I'm looking forward to improving, competing and doing my best every week as I normally do."

Hunt made his NRL debut in 2004 and played in Brisbane's 2006 premiership team, which remains the last time the club tasted title success.

He quit the Broncos after the 2009 season to sign a groundbreaking deal with the AFL's expansion club Gold Coast Suns before heading to rugby union.

Hunt made his league return with Souths-Logan in the Intrust Super Cup this year and said watching the Broncos' plight had motivated him to help Brisbane.

Karmichael Hunt played for the Waratahs in Super Rugby last year.
Karmichael Hunt played for the Waratahs in Super Rugby last year.

"I've watched more rugby league since I've left than when I was playing," he said.

"They've struggled the last couple of years for different reasons and as an Old Boy it's been hard to watch.

"When you're in these positions, it's an opportunity to climb out of it.

"The boys showed some great resilience against the Titans last week and I feel like they've got the ability to turn this around quickly. They have the coaching staff to guide them through.

"As hard as the last couple of years have been for Broncos fans, I feel like there's a lot of promise moving forward and we can turn that around."

Hunt has been playing centre for Souths but can fill a number of backline positions.

Even if he isn't needed to play first grade immediately, Hunt is confident his experience from an 18-year professional sport career can help the young Broncos.

"I caught up with (Walters) a couple of weeks ago before the NRL signed off on the contract and he wanted to get me in for my experience and helping the young group of guys," Hunt said.

Hunt tried his hand in the AFL with the Gold Coast Suns.
Hunt tried his hand in the AFL with the Gold Coast Suns.

"A big part of it for me is to get in, compete with these young guys and help them out where I can.

"At the same time, I'm there to compete, too, and play games and give my all every training session.

"Hopefully that gives me an opportunity and my ability and work ethic give me a chance to pull that jersey on.

"These next few weeks will be about seeing where I'm at. I might need a little bit conditioning-wise, speed-wise and strength-wise. I'm not sure. It's hard to predict these things when you've been out of the game for so long.

"I feel like I will do a good job to get up to speed."

Originally published as Why Karmichael is so excited by second shot with Broncos



Students immerse in culture at Yallarm camp

Premium Content Students immerse in culture at Yallarm camp

Students got to build a raft on the Boyne River, participate in activities on...

GPC grows empire with new Bundaberg marine base

Premium Content GPC grows empire with new Bundaberg marine base

The new marine base is expected to provide a number of services including...