Tom Trbojevic is used to dazzling the crowd at 4 Pines Park but it was his younger brother who took the reins on Saturday afternoon.
Saturday’s sellout at 4 Pines Park was supposed to be out about Tom Trbojevic’s comeback from a knee injury. Instead, it was his younger brother who stole the show in a performance that could kickstart his young NRL career.
In just his sixth game and first NRL start, the 20-year-old made the most of his opportunity to fill in for try-scoring machine Haumole Olakau’atu, who was out through illness.
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He scored the first try of the afternoon, set up another on the stroke of halftime and then capped a memorable day when he slid over for a second later in the game.
“It was a pretty special moment for me and my family. It was such a special moment that I’ll never forget,” he said of the opportunity to play with his brothers at the ground where they spent most of their childhood on the hill, dreaming of one day playing in the NRL.
No one was happier for Ben than older brother Jake, who gave him a massive hug after he crossed for his first NRL try.
“I think that’s the fastest he’s ever run. It was such a cool moment to score my first try in the NRL and to see them running over was special,” Ben said.
“To be honest, I was just going out there trying to focus on defence. The ball just kept coming my way and I was in the right spot at the right time, so I’ll take it as a bonus.”
The youngest of the Trbojevic trio admits he prefers playing in the centres but said that might change after Saturday’s double. He only found out an hour before kick-off that he’d be in the back row, and his effort didn’t go unnoticed by the coach.
“It’s a game that Benny will remember for a long, long time,” Des Hasler said.
“It’s usually that the man of the match goes to the other bloke (his brother Tom) but Benny got the spoils today. He’ll get an enormous amount of confidence out of today. I’m very happy for him and I’m very proud.”
Lazier children would have said a two-try haul was enough of a gift for Mother’s Day, but Ben is a good son who already had something prepared for his mum.
“I’ve got her something. I actually got it today (Saturday) so we’ll treat her well tomorrow,” he smiled.
“I went and saw them (after the game) and they were pumped. My mates are there, my girlfriend was there and everyone was stoked.”
Originally published as Ben Trbojevic steals the show in Tommy Turbo’s return from injury