AAP Rugby

Seibold hails Haas for breakout NRL season

By AAP Newswire

Brisbane coach Anthony Seibold has hailed rising star Payne Haas for what has been a breakout season in the NRL.

Haas cemented his status as one of the game's most damaging forwards when he made his State of Origin debut for NSW in game one this year.

And while injury prevented him from getting picked for game two, Haas was overlooked for the decider in Sydney.

Yet the 19-year-old has ignored his omission by continuing what has been a stellar second season in first grade.

In last week's draw with the Warriors, Haas carried the ball for a game-high 197 metres, broke five tackles and scored a try in 65 minutes of game time.

"Payne's been really consistent for us. He's won the last couple of players' player awards, he won the coach's award this week," Seibold said.

"This season he's been thereabouts as one of our better players each week.

"Consistency is what I like about him. I'm really big on trusting players, and his best and his worst are very close together."

Having impressed against most of the game's big men this year, Haas gets another challenge when he tackles Canterbury star Dylan Napa on Thursday.

Napa was picked for the Maroons in the opening two games but was dropped by coach Kevin Walters for game three.

"Dylan Napa is a very experienced front-rower so it's a great challenge. I'm sure Payno's ready to go," Seibold said.

Fellow Broncos forward David Fifita is also set for more game time against the Bulldogs after being limited to just 31 minutes against the Warriors.

Fifita carried the ball for just 37 metres but scored a try in 31 minutes.

"It was always planned to give him certain minutes. You've got to understand, David is a 19-year-old guy who has played three State of Origins," Seibold said.

"He's never experienced Origin before.

"It's been really challenging for him so I've tried to take a little bit of pressure off David. I said: 'We need you in the 17'. I didn't want to rest him.

"He got on with about 22 minutes to go and certainly made an impact."