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Turner Locks Down New Role

Martin Gabor, National Correspondent‌‌, ‌‌‌NRL.com

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He might not have the same bulk as the Burgess twins, but Kyle Turner says he's loving his new role in the front row and can't see why he shouldn't see out the season playing prop for South Sydney. 

The Indigenous All Star has played the majority of his career in the second row but was shifted to the middle third of the field two weeks ago in the 21-20 win over Penrith where he held his own against representative players James Tamou and Trent Merrin.  

Turner told NRL.com that his style of play didn't have to change that much because the roles of locks and props are virtually the same in the modern era, especially when the Rabbitohs have someone of Sam Burgess's calibre in the middle.  

"They sort of wanted to play me and Sam as lock forwards in the middle. Sam takes the front row hit-ups and I just take the other ones that no one else wants. Although I'm playing in the middle, it's just another number on my back," he said. 

"You see the likes of Andrew Fifita and Jason Taumalolo and they've got great footwork and they can ball play, so it's not like the old days when you'd just send your big guys out there to do hit-ups and let them do the hard yards while the locks do the fun stuff. 

"I like getting in the middle and doing the tough stuff and the nitty gritty but also doing some ball-playing as well."

The 25-year-old has played 50 and 49 minutes respectively in his two games at prop and said he was unlikely to play from start to finish with the No.10 on his back given the physical demands of the role. 

"It's definitely tougher in the middle trying to get that 80 out," Turner said. 

"Sam Burgess can do it but he's a freak of a nature. I'm just getting my rhythm in the middle now because it's all about getting that game management and game speed sorted.

"In sets of defence you're doing three or four tackles in a row at times and then you're expected to do one of the hit-ups in the next set so it does take its toll on the body. That said, you get a good stint out, take a break and then you can go back out there really hard for the rest of the game."