Dodds to fight for Wire

New Warrington prop Mitchell Dodds knows the privilege it is to play professional rugby league and won’t take it for granted in Super League.

Dodds has landed in the UK and with the Wire after six years with the Brisbane Broncos in the NRL.

The front-rower played off the bench in the Broncos’ recent grand final loss to North Queensland and has experienced many ups and downs in his footy career.

In 2013 he injured his ACL, which kept him out of the game for 16 months. Last season he also hurt his knee, with fears of another ACL tear, but Dodds avoided surgery and managed to get back on the field quickly.

Missing seven rounds in the middle of the 2015 campaign, the forward forced his way back into Brisbane’s team and played the final 12 games as the Broncos marched into the grand final.

“I always told myself…the thought did run through my head that I might not be playing high-grade again,” Dodds reflected.

“I told myself that I’m going to have fight for everything, that’s what kind of world you’re in. Nothing’s coming easy.

“When a little bit of a hiccup comes like that it’s that old fight or flight, and I’m happy I stuck at it because it could have easily gone the other way and not be playing football still, which I love to.”

The Broncos went down to the Cowboys in extra-time thanks to a dramatic field goal from Jonathan Thurston.

“To be part of that – even the lead up to the actual game was an experience,” Dodds said.

“A lot of people… I’ve been to a grand final and that’s a big thing.

“We didn’t come away with it but to experience the magnitude of the game was pretty impressive.

“That’s football, there’s high highs and low and lows. That’s what happens.

“I was just pretty grateful to get in there, be a part of that team.”

Dodds grew up in Brisbane and has spent his whole career at Red Hill.

The 26-year old said it was hard to leave the Broncos.

“It was, definitely,” he admitted.

“Especially when you have such love for that club with all the boys there.

“I’ve been playing with them for five years, it’s a long time, it’s a big part of your life really. It is hard.

“But I’m glad to be welcomed with open arms and in Warrington.”

The amiable Australian is known for his tackling and is keen to broaden his game and experience Super League’s offensive flavour.

“I hope I can put in a pretty good effort defensively and attacking,” Dodds said.

“I know I need to improve the attacking side of my game and I’m hoping the boys can help me with that as well.

“We’ve got some quality calibre of players playing. I think defensively I should shorten up a couple of blokes but we’ll just see how I go.

“I haven’t started playing yet – I might get fixed up myself!”.

Warrington have recruited well for 2016 with the likes of Dodds and Kurt Gidley joining from the NRL and England forward Joe Westerman from Hull FC.

“It’s a solid squad,” Dodds said.

“You need to start playing to see if we’re all clicking together, if everyone’s working. I hope to see that soon.”

Dodds has signed a one-year contract with the Wolves but said he already feels like home in Cheshire.

“This was the first time I was going to be away from family and Brisbane,” he explained.

“I just kind of wanted to experience it for myself and if I did get homesick or something like that, I wouldn’t be putting the club in a position to get rid of me.

“I feel like it’s quite a good club and has made me feel like home.”

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