Civoniceva is now in his second and final year of contract at Penrith; there is however an option for a 3rd year.
But apparently since Bennett has vacated, the new Broncos are trying to clear a path for the respected Test and Maroons forward to rejoin the Broncos in 2010 – at this stage on a single year deal, possibly with an option.
With salary cap finances tight throughout the NRL, sources suggest rookie David Taylor could be the fall guy, apparently former Broncos hardman Gordon Tallis, now coaching at the Bunnies, is keen to lure Taylor to the Rabbitohs.
At 32 years old, Petero has been playing strongly and consistently despite problems at Penrith in recent times. The current skipper said last year he would be very keen to look at finishing his career in Brisbane, although a fall out with former mentor Wayne Bennett was always going to be a concern.
Apparently Bennett and Petero had a disagreement over a pay-rise when Shane Webcke departed. Civoniceva says the money never came and he was forced to walk away at the end of 2007 after finances at the club became impossibly tight, the departure not sitting well with fans who had a strong respect for Civoniceva.
But fast forward to now, with Ivan Henjak the new coach – a man who Civoniceva apparently regards highly – insiders at the Broncos are believed to be sounding out their former charger – to get him back into the heart of Queensland.
Civoniceva has kept his house in the Brisbane and has always made it clear he would return to Brisbane to raise his young family when his footballing days were over.
Player manager David Phillips who looks after Petero refused to add comment, saying he had no knowledge of the situation.
Seemingly ageless, Petero’s strong form and a good run with injuries has allowed him to compete consistently and continue to represent Australia at the highest level of Rugby League in recent years.