Sport Roosters' crazy NRL year excites Robinson
Coach friendships go on hold for NRL final
Gold Coast coach Justin Holbrook learned a lot under Sydney Roosters coach Trent Robinson, but that friendship is on hold heading into Saturday's NRL final.Justin Holbrook knows he wouldn't be the NRL coach he is now without Trent Robinson's guidance but when Gold Coast face the Sydney Roosters on Saturday that friendship is going on hold.
For all the injuries, suspensions and farewells the Sydney Roosters have endured in 2021, coach Trent Robinson knows the setbacks can only make his NRL club a stronger outfit going forward.
The Roosters' season came to a disappointing end in Mackay on Friday, thumped 42-6 by a merciless Manly team in the first-ever semi-final to be played in the north Queensland town.
Friday's performance at BB Print Stadium left a bitter taste in Robinson's mouth but he could only reflect on the achievement of reaching the second week of finals in a year when so much has gone wrong for his team.
Polarising penalty slammed as Roosters ride luck
A controversial penalty awarded against Gold Coast marred the opening half of the Roosters-Titans elimination final.Titans second-rower Kevin Proctor was left frustrated and two rugby league greats dumbfounded, after the Roosters ran in a try through fullback James Tedesco on the back of a controversial penalty.
Leaders Boyd Cordner, Brett Morris and Jake Friend weren't on the pitch, the trio all having called time on their NRL careers during 2021 as bodies failed them.
Luke Keary and Lindsay Collins? Their seasons ended in round three with ruptured ACLs.
Teenage sensation Joseph Suaalii's rookie year ended with a foot injury while Joseph Manu's cheekbone was busted on the eve of the finals.
The hits kept coming leading into Friday's must-win final with Sam Verrills suspended and Sio Siua Taukeaiho sidelined with injury.
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It's a recipe Robinson admits he's never before had to deal with as a head coach.
"It's the craziest coaching year I've had," Robinson said.
NRL comes down hard on Roosters star's hit
Sam Verrills will miss Sydney's semi-final against Manly unless he is successfully able to overturn his charge.Sydney Roosters hooker Sam Verrills is facing at least a week on the sidelines for his hit on Brian Kelly, despite claims from rugby league icon Andrew Johns that the hit didn't even warrant a penalty.
"To retire absolute legends of the game. To see the injuries that we've had.
"Every game was a new combination and a new task, but the attitude of the guys to go about that was incredible, every week was 'rightio, we can do this'."
In the absence of so much talent, new stars have emerged including teenage half Sam Walker and Robinson says the experience and responsibility given to those players can only be a positive for the Roosters' future.
"We're a greater Roosters club than what we were at the start of 2021, now at the end of 2021," he said.
"They've done our club proud the way the way that they've gone about it and we're a stronger club because of the way that they've acted this year.
"We're a better team because of the way we handled this season."
Turbo-powered Manly too good for Roosters .
A Tom Trbojevic-inspired Manly has run riot in Mackay to thrash the Sydney Roosters 42-6 and move into their first NRL preliminary final in eight years.The Sea Eagles' superstar fullback fired back after his quiet night last week against Melbourne, scoring two tries and setting up another as Manly claimed a comprehensive 42-6 semi-final win over the Roosters.