Brothers Jackson (left) and Dane Clarke have joined NRL clubs Broncos and Titans junior development teams. 
Brothers Jackson (left) and Dane Clarke have joined NRL clubs Broncos and Titans junior development teams.  Jay Cronan

Clarke bros picked by rival teams

RUGBY LEAGUE: Like most Aussie brothers, the Clarke boys grew up playing footy against each other in the backyard.

And in a few years they could be on opposing sides of South-East Queensland’s great NRL rivalry.

Dane, 17, and Jackson, 14, have been picked up by rival NRL clubs Gold Coast Titans and Brisbane Broncos respectively.

And both have the lasting desire to make it to the top of the game.

Big brother Dane has landed a starting spot in the Titans’ Under-18 Mal Meninga Cup team, while young Jackson has been drafted into Brisbane’s elite player development squad.

Their selections continue the success of the boys in rugby league.

Both Clarkes are back-rowers and they look built to last in a sport which chews up and spits out the weak.

But the similarities don’t end there.

Dane and Jackson are products of the Ballina Seagulls and have captained their Group One junior rugby league representative teams – for five years.

Dane models his game on tireless Parramatta champion Nathan Hindmarsh, while Jackson likes to think of himself as a wide-running back-rower in the mould of the Dragons’ Ben Creagh.

Hindmarsh and Creagh are internationals, which gives an insight to where these kids’ ambitions lie.

The Clarkes are part of a quintet of Seagulls juniors who have been spotted by the top-flight clubs from across the border.

Damian Sironen will play alongside Dane in the Titans’ Mal Meninga Cup squad.

Fifteen-year-old Alex Grant has a three-year contract with the club and will turn out in the halves for Gold Coast’s Cyril Connell Cup Under-16 team.

And Jackson will have a mate at the Broncos – his Seagulls comrade Jay Meaney has also been selected as part of the club’s elite player development squad.

With the five Seagulls boys determined to excel, feathers are sure to fly between the Titans and the Broncos in the years to come.



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