Reds star Jordan Petaia would carve up the NRL: Hunt

Joel Gould |

Reds’ Jordan Petaia (pic) would be a huge hit in the NRL, dual-international Karmichael Hunt says.
Reds’ Jordan Petaia (pic) would be a huge hit in the NRL, dual-international Karmichael Hunt says.

Karmichael Hunt is a huge fan of Queensland Reds fullback Jordan Petaia, so much so he would like to watch the rugby star tear up the NRL.

Former Wallabies centre Hunt is now coaching Souths-Logan in the Queensland Cup and has his sights set on taking his mentoring skills to the NRL.

The 23-year-old Petaia, who has played 31 Tests for Australia, lined up at fullback for the Reds in their 40-22 Super Rugby Pacific win over the NSW Waratahs last week and will play the same position against the Hurricanes on Sunday.

“I’m a huge Jordan Petaia fan,” Hunt told AAP.

“I was (at the Reds) when he first started turning up in the junior systems and his athletic ability, explosiveness and all-round skill means he could play anywhere.

“I would love to see him play rugby league. Whether he makes the jump over in the future I am not sure but he would be a very successful outside back in the NRL, a centre or fullback.

“He has that ability to bounce around, fend and create havoc for the defensive line. I’d love to see it in league.”

Petaia is off contract at the end of the current season and said recently he had attracted interest from a Queensland-based NRL club.

His close friend and Wallabies teammate Mark Nawaqanitawase will join the Sydney Roosters in 2025.

Dual-code international Karmichael Hunt.
Dual international Karmichael Hunt will coach Souths-Logan in the Queensland Cup again in 2024. (Darren England/AAP PHOTOS)

Dual international Hunt said Petaia would be a success no matter what decision he made on his future.

“Jordan has been in enough systems under good coaches to maximise his ability,” Hunt said

“That X-factor that he has makes him one of the players people turn their TV on to watch.”

Hunt said the Reds were blessed to have two outstanding choices for fullback in their squad.

He also admires Jock Campbell, who has been named on the wing for the Reds against the Hurricanes after coming off the bench against the Waratahs.

Campbell, with four Test caps, lined up at No.15 for most of the 2023 season for Queensland.

“Jock is very talented as well and is another young player coming through who is lightning quick,” Hunt said.

“He understands the game really well and had some really good performances last year. The Reds are spoiled for choice.”