HOOKER Adam O'Brien is relishing the prospect of playing a key role under head coach James Lowes next term.
The talented 21-year-old last week agreed a new two-year deal with the club, ensuring his future as a Bradford Bull.
But the former Provident Stadium Academy star, who has in recent years acted as something of an understudy, admits he will be required to take his game to another level in 2015.
“Next year is going to be very different for me,” said O'Brien, who is proudly sponsored by the Monro Family.
“In the past I have been the rookie in the team, certainly in my position, but now I feel ready to step up to the plate as a senior figure.
“With Dave Petersen coming in there is going to be some competition for the hooking role and I will have to ensure I am improving at a good rate to make sure I stay in the frame.
“I have learnt a huge amount, particularly over the last few weeks, working with a former international hooker in James Lowes, and I want to take it into next season.”
O'Brien boasts a level of Kingstone Press Championship experience, having last year featured for Dewsbury Rams – the Bulls' second-tier partners – on dual-registration terms.
The Halifax-born talent has been impressed by the way in which the club is piecing together a “hugely competitive” squad for next season.
And he expects big things, with Bradford looking to mount a promotion charge.
“The squad is looking very good, we have made some great signings and re-signings," added O'Brien.
“I cannot wait to get pre-season done and get playing with them all next year and hopefully we can get straight back up, which is our aim.
“Our supporters have been absolutely immense and everything about the club is great at the minute.
“I believe the type of players being brought in will put us a strong position next year, so we have to ensure we back it up on the field by getting the wins required.”
O'Brien and his fellow Bulls return to First:Utility Super League action on Sunday, when Lee Radford's Hull FC visit the Provident Stadium (kick-off 3.00pm).
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