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Maranta ignores critics over code switch

AAP logoAAP 15/12/2016 Vince Rugari

Queensland Reds recruit Lachlan Maranta has brushed off criticism from former Wallaby Greg Martin over his move from the NRL.

Maranta, 24, was slammed as "the worst signing I have ever seen" by Martin when his shift from the Brisbane Broncos was announced earlier this year.

"I dealt with it for two minutes, then you just move on," Maranta said.

"People are going to say what they say and everyone's entitled to their own opinion. I haven't really thought about it since."

Maranta, whose grandfather was one of the Broncos' club founders and is the godson of coach Wayne Bennett, made 70 NRL appearances across five seasons, scoring 30 tries.

He said he was enjoying the "challenge" of switching codes, having dabbled in the 15-man game before as a student at renowned Brisbane rugby union school St Joseph's College.

"Obviously coming from a union school it was always in the back of my mind and the opportunity came, and I jumped at it," Maranta said.

"If I wasn't going in 100 per cent it probably wasn't the right decision, but my mind was made up.

"I'm loving it. I'm happy, everything's going well.

"There's still a lot of things I know I've got to work on, and I know it's not going to be a quick little fix, it's going to take me a while."

Maranta has been training with the Reds for the past month, working closely with Reds assistant coach and former dual-code international Brad Thorn as he reconnects with the finer aspects of the game.

His addition to the squad gives Queensland further depth in the outside backs, where he will compete for either fullback or a spot on the wings against the likes of Eto Nabuli, Chris Feauia-Sautia, Chris Kuridrani, boom youngster Izaia Perese and another code-hopper, Karmichael Hunt.

"He's really picking up the game nicely," Hunt said.

"There really hasn't been any need (to help him out) - there's probably been a bit of chat on the field between drills, just asking a few pointers where to be at fullback and things like that, but nothing serious.

"We're enjoying having him at the club and he's enjoying being on board."

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