Matt Gillett did it tough against the Storm.
Matt Gillett did it tough against the Storm.

Gillett struggles in Broncos switch

MATT Gillett likened his time at lock to a stint in the washing machine, but the fit-again Brisbane star insists he'll remain in the position as long as new coach Anthony Seibold wishes.

The Australian and Queensland back rower's NRL return on Thursday night came nearly a year after serious neck and shoulder injuries derailed his 2018 season.

Shifted to lock in a new-look Broncos side, Melbourne didn't miss him as he racked up 50 tackles in a 22-12 loss to open the season.

"It felt like I was in a washing machine cycle for about 70 minutes, just running around trying to do my job," the 30-year-old said.

"I was asked about it a few times and thought it wouldn't be too much different (to playing in the back row) but it definitely was. You've got to be on the ball the whole time.

"I was sort of running around with my head chopped off."

Now in his 10th season at Red Hill, Gillett has forged a reputation as one of the game's best on the left edge.

But Seibold will deploy him through the middle, with Tevita Pangai (hamstring) still gathering match fitness and Payne Haas suspended for the season's first four games.

Matt Gillett has been learning to change his game since shifting from the second row to lock.
Matt Gillett has been learning to change his game since shifting from the second row to lock.

"It is probably a bit of time before I get to go back to the edge, but for the time being I'm happy to do my role, whatever it is," he said.

Gillett wouldn't bite when asked if the move would impact his chances of a representative return and said the Storm's relentless style meant he was always going to struggle to have an offensive impact.

"You can talk about doing the right things, but it's another thing to go out and do it ... One loose tackle and away they go," he said.

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