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Zac’s rise from Butcher Boy to Bronco

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“Good luck, run hard, tackle hard, have fun and enjoy yourself”.

With those wise words from his dad still ringing in his ears, former Novocastrian Zac Hosking fulfilled a lifelong goal at the weekend.

The Central Newcastle Butcher Boys junior made his NRL debut in front of almost 30,000 fans on Sunday, lining up for the Brisbane Broncos against the St George-Illawarra Dragons at Suncorp Stadium.

And, the 25-year-old certainly impressed all and sundry with his no-nonsense performance.

The Broncos, missing up to 10 regular players, stormed home to upset their rivals 32-18.

For his part, Hosking produced 17 runs for a total of 143m, busted the defence four times, and effected 28 tackles.

So, it was easily a night to remember for the boom second-rower.

But, in many ways, his whole-hearted effort also reminded rugby league pundits of his father, cult hero David “The Mule” Hosking.

He spent three seasons with the South Sydney Rabbitohs, and another four with the Manly Sea Eagles, registering 78 appearances overall in the 1980s and early 1990s.

“He goes good like his dad, however Zac’s more mobile than his old man,” commentator Paul Vautin quipped.

Hosking snr was on hand, too, when Brisbane legend Steve Walters presented the ex-Newcastle Knights NSW Cup Player of the Year with his maiden first grade jumper.

“As a family, we’re extremely proud of him,” he said.

“Zac’s earned it.

“Each week, I tell him ‘good luck, run hard, tackle hard, have fun and enjoy yourself’.

“It will be no different on Sunday.”

The young gun didn’t seem overawed by the occasion either.

“I’d like to thank everyone [at the club] for the opportunity,” a humble Hosking said.

“You’ve given me the chance to live out my childhood dream.

“I won’t let anyone down.”

Zac Hosking at the Newcastle Knights. Photo: newcastleknights.com.au

Meanwhile, Hosking’s former outfit, the Butcher Boys, will tackle the Macquarie Scorpions in round 16 of Tooheys Newcastle Rugby League on 16 July, while the Cessnock Goannas face the Wyong Roos and the Maitland Pickers host the Kurri Kurri Bulldogs.

Twenty-four hours later, The Entrance Tigers lock horns with the Western Suburbs Rosellas and the South Newcastle Lions head into battle with the Lakes United Seagulls.

All fixtures were postponed at the weekend, due to the recent flooding in the Hunter.

Tooheys Newcastle Rugby League (Real NRL)

Denton Engineering Cup

Round 15 results:

  • All matches postponed

Round 16 draw:

Saturday 16 July

  • 3pm: Cessnock Goannas v Wyong Roos (Cessnock Sportsground)
  • 3pm: Macquarie Scorpions v Central Newcastle Butcher Boys (Lyall Peacock Field)
  • 3pm: Maitland Pickers v Kurri Kurri Bulldogs (Maitland No 1 Sportsground)

Sunday 17 July

  • 3pm: The Entrance Tigers v Western Suburbs Rosellas (EDSACC Oval)
  • 3pm: South Newcastle Lions v Lakes United Seagulls (Townson Oval)

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