What ex-Leeds Rhinos man Kallum Watkins said to tempt Brodie Croft to Salford Red Devils

Brodie Croft has been sensational since moving to Super League.

Rightly nominated for the Man of Steel, he also became the 203rd player to be named in the Super League Dream taking a position in the halves alongside St Helens’ starlet Jack Welsby.

There is perhaps no better running halfback in Super League and that was there for all to see yesterday when his break led to a try for Kallum Watkins in a decisive first half moment for the Red Devils as they progressed passed Huddersfield into the semi-finals where they’ll meet Champions St Helens.

After the game try scorer, Watkins spoke fondly about his halfback on Sky Sports with Jon Wells: “Brodie has been outstanding for us this year. His leadership, his professional has really grown into our team.

“Early on in the season, he was probably running a bit too much too many times. Them opportunities present themselves when you’re getting on top of forwards.”

He also revealed what he said to Croft before he decided to join Salford this year. Like Watkins and a few others at Salford – namely fellow Dream Team member Tim Lafai who had a very different job before joining Salford which you can read about here – Croft was in a tough spot before moving to the AJ Bell Stadium.

He’d been moved on from Melbourne to Brisbane after being seen as the next Cooper Cronk at the Storm. He then struggled at Brisbane but has really evolved at Salford in 2022.

Watkins meanwhile had been allowed to leave Leeds in 2019 despite being captain but struggled in the NRL especially because of the pandemic resulting in a move to his home town club.

Having experienced the reviving effects of a move to Salford and talked the club up to Brodie before he made the decision to move.

Watkins said on Sky Sports: “He’s learnt from the best, he’s been at Melbourne, he’s obviously had a tough time at Brisbane. He’s got an opportunity here with us and we’ve tried to make him settle as much as possible.

“I remember speaking to him before he came to Salford and I just explained to him that this group is a great group of lads. It’s probably not the same as it is at Melbourne or Brisbane but Salford have got something going here.

“He’s come in, his professionalism stands out, he’s constantly watching video and writing notes down and that rubs off on the team.”

Unfortunately, Salford will have to do without Croft in next week’s semi-final against St Helens owing to a head injury so Chris Atkin will likely play in the halves.

Watkins though will play a key role playing in his fifth Super League semi-final having only lost one in his career.

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