Bookmark and Share

Boyd finally happy at Broncos

November 24th, 2014, 07:17 PM
Talking to media for a minute was once hard enough for Darius Boyd.

But the once troubled fullback on Monday joked with journalists he could speak for an hour about how off-field soul searching had changed his life.

Boyd chatting at length with a room full of media once seemed as unlikely as long-term coach Wayne Bennett cracking a smile.

But both rare sightings occurred after a relaxed Boyd happily took his seat alongside Bennett when the fullback officially returned to the Broncos, six years after making a tearful exit.

He even attempted humour when asked what he had learned during his recent two-month sabbatical from the NRL after checking into a mental health facility for depression.

"How long do you have? An hour?" Boyd smiled.

"I sorted out a few things with family, a few ways I handle things in situations.

"I have learned a lot when I went away to the clinic and different things.

"I have made a lot of plans - now I just need to put them into action."

Boyd earned NRL infamy in 2009 when he held a 42-second press conference at the Dragons before frustrated journalists pulled the plug.

"Are you fair dinkum?" one TV reporter asked.

He became so reluctant to talk that he stopped appearing at Queensland team media sessions.

"Darius is not here because he does not want to talk to you and I am pretty sure you don't want to talk to him," a Maroons official announced at the Origin briefing.

How times have changed judging by Boyd's 10-minute charm offensive on Monday.

"I want to be a happier person. Some of the things that I did in the past probably didn't make me a happier person," Boyd said.

"I can't change things in the past but I am looking forward to a new chapter in the future.

"It will take time but I am on the right track."

A beaming Bennett looked like he could not have been more proud of Boyd.

"I have always accepted Darius for what he is but obviously he feels a lot better about himself, that's obvious to me," he said.

Boyd admitted he did not think he would return to Red Hill after being told he was not wanted by club powerbrokers six years ago.

"He came back with tears in his eyes and said 'what do I do coach?'" Bennett said.

"I said you can come with me - the rest is history."

Boyd debuted as an 18-year-old under Bennett at Brisbane in 2006 and followed the master mentor to St George Illawarra, where Boyd won a premiership and the Clive Churchill Medal in 2010, and later Newcastle.

Boyd said he hoped to end his career at Brisbane after signing a three-year deal.

"I want to make the most of them (three years), to show what I can do - it would be awesome to retire here," he said.