Jan 24 2013 By Tim Street
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LONDON Broncos boss Tony Rea has challenged his new signings to realise their potential and break into his first team.
Rea's activity in the transfer market has been low key since landing former Widnes centre Shane Grady from Australian side Thirroul Butchers as long ago as last summer.
Tommy Lee, who can play at lock or hooker, followed from Huddersfield, while Swinton Lions Alex Hurst centre Alex Hurst was snapped up following an impressive trial. A further centre, Wigan's John O'Donnell, remains on trial with nothing yet on the table.
Rea said: “Shane is a rangy guy who is getting better and better each day in training – he's a strong ball runner and a determined player.
“Alex has all the talent, and his challenge is to take all the intensity he shows on the training ground into games. Lee is very similar and knows what he has to do too.
“That's their challenge. They have the talent, now they have to show it. But it's the same for everybody, nit just the new guys.”
Rea does not anticipate any new signings, which means the bulk of last season's under-performing squad will need to up their games to avoid another season of struggle.
However, huge signs improvements were evident once Rea took over from Rob Powell at the tail end of the campaign, and he now has a full season to work with, although the Aussie is making no predictions.
He said: “We've been training very hard and go into the season with a lot of confidence and bounce, but that's all it does. You have to earn the right to have a good view of your own success. Words are cheap at this stage – we'll do our talking on the pitch.”
Chief executive Gus Mackay, who oversaw the transition back to London Broncos a year ago, reckons Rea heads up a team he believes can finally make a success of rugby league in the capital.
And although the club only have one 'on the road' fixture this year, back at Gillingham, Mackay believes the future lies in constantly looking for new areas of support.
He said: “We have to be able to expand the game down here by taking it to new audiences, and the statistics show the game at Gillingham was a big success last year.
“The Leyton Orient one was not such a hit, but alternative venues are a big thing for the future. We have another year playing at The Stoop, but we are always looking.”