Ben Hunt has ben dropped by Wayne Bennett for this week's game against South Sydney.
Ben Hunt has ben dropped by Wayne Bennett for this week's game against South Sydney. DAVE HUNT

Broncos star Hunt axed for Rabbitohs clash

WAYNE Bennett has dropped a selection bombshell, axing first-choice halfback Ben Hunt for Friday night's clash against South Sydney at Suncorp Stadium.

On a drama-charged Thursday morning at Red Hill, Hunt was relegated to train with the reserves, affectionately known as the Renegades, as Bennett backed rival playmakers Kodi Nikorima and Benji Marshall.

Bennett confirmed Hunt's demotion after the training session, admitting it was one of the toughest calls of his decorated coaching career.

"It wasn't an easy decision but it has been made," he said.

"It's just form. Benji has played well, Kodi has played well and Anthony has picked up his form the past few weeks.

"Ben has come back from injury but his form hasn't been where we wanted it."

Nikorima will start alongside Anthony Milford in the halves, with Marshall to play an impact role off the interchange bench.

"Kodi will start (at halfback). The conversations are hard to have but we had to have it," Bennett said.

Marshall was outstanding against the Roosters last week, outshining Hunt by scoring a try and setting up two others as he turned back the clock.

Hunt, the Dragons-bound $6 million man, will play for the Ipswich Jets against Norths this Saturday as the highest paid player in Intrust Super Cup history.

News Corp Australia

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