Category: Rabbitohs

Greg Inglis thinks Fullback fits

South Sydney recruit Greg Inglis has added his weight to the push for a switch to fullback, but admits the size of his girth could prove an obstacle. Just days after his former coach Craig Bellamy claimed Inglis’ best position remained fullback, the former Melbourne star expressed his preference for the No.1 jumper – a position he hasn’t played on a regular basis since 2006 at the Storm. Speculation surrounding Inglis’ role heightened after a quiet opening night with the Rabbitohs in which he managed just 12 touches in the 40-29 loss to Sydney Roosters last Friday. Bellamy’s comments only added to the argument, with veteran Souths fullback Rhys Wesser in the firing line. “I still think my best position is fullback, but I made centre my own,” Inglis told OneHD’s One Week at a Time program. “Wherever you put me … I’ll do the job as best as I can. “I’d only been back on the field for three weeks before round one and obviously getting the combination right with (second rower) David Taylor – (who) I played a bit of Origin with last year and John Sutton … I’ll just do my best to go in and get the ball. Continue reading

Sam Burgess relieved with prognosis

Relieved South Sydney forward Sam Burgess is confident he’ll be back on the field within a month after scans revealed only minor damage to his troublesome left shoulder. The England international re-injured his left shoulder just 30 minutes in to his comeback match from off-season surgery against the Roosters on Friday night. Burgess, 22, admits he feared the worst after coming off second best in an attempted tackle on New Zealand centre Shaun Kenny-Dowall in the Bunnies’ 40-29 loss. But the likeable giant could hardly wipe the smile of his face when he emerged to front a large media pack on Monday morning. “I got some fairly good results this morning, there was a little bit of damage in there but it’s better than I expected on Friday night,” a relieved Burgess said at Redfern Oval. “Fingers crossed I’ll be back out there in two to four weeks.” “I’ll work hard on some rehab and we’ll go from there.” Burgess dismissed suggestions he tried to return from his off-season injury too soon. “It was a bit of a shock, I trained really well and the shoulder had been really strong in training so I felt really confident to play,” he said. Continue reading

South Sydney face an anxious wait with star forward Sam Burgess to see a specialist this week after reinjuring a shoulder in Friday night’s NRL loss to the Sydney Roosters. Burgess left the Sydney Football Stadium late in the first half of the 40-29 defeat before having an MRI scan on the left shoulder he had surgery on in November. The Rabbitohs will be desperately hoping the big Englishman can avoid another operation after a night of carnage which will leave the club’s highly rated pack seriously depleted for the second straight year. Coach John Lang was hopeful on Friday night that Burgess’ injury was “not super bad”. But another bout of surgery could have the backrower sidelined for three months. Luckless prop Scott Geddes is gone for the season after it was confirmed he ruptured his Achilles tendon. The injury-plagued 30-year-old, who has spent more than half of his decade long career in the stands, lasted just seven minutes of 2011 when he came off the Rabbitohs bench. Lock Ben Lowe’s broken foot is still to be confirmed but he is likely to miss up to two months. Continue reading

South Sydney super signing Greg Inglis and gun Rabbitohs Sam Burgess, Issac Luke and Luke Stuart have today been named in one of the club’s strongest line-ups on paper in years for their 2011 Telstra Premiership opener against the Roosters next Friday.

Rabbitohs coach John Lang has taken the unusual step of naming his side over a week before kick-off, with the talented line-up sure to have fans excited about the clash between the fierce eastern suburbs rivals, which will open the 2011 season at the SFS.

With only Michael Crocker and Jason Clark unavailable to play in round one due to injury, Lang will be fielding close to his best possible team, however it will also be the first time Inglis, Luke, Burgess and Stuart have played a match together.

All four missed the three trial games – of which Souths only won one match against NSW Cup team Newtown – because they were recovering from surgery for a variety of injuries. Continue reading

Titans flog Souths

South Sydney coach John Lang has a major headache ahead of the Rabbitohs’ opening match of the NRL season after a 42-4 flogging by Gold Coast on Saturday night.

Already missing star signing Greg Inglis and with fellow internationals Sam Burgess, Isaac Luke and Michael Crocker under injury clouds as well, Lang’s worries were heightened with a further injury to backrower Ben Lowe during the trial match in Coffs Harbour on the NSW north coast.

Even accounting for the absence of his stars Lang would also be holding serious doubts over his attacking options as the tried and tested halves combination of Chris Sandow and John Sutton was virtually impotent against the Titans.

Gold Coast coach John Cartwright has no such worries. Continue reading

Once the season proper starts I will be looking at each team and some of their key players as we get closer to the start of the silly season – the bye rounds and I’ll use “Dream Team Pro” so at least their will be a bit more information and statistics than last year.

Every year round 9 has a huge impact on coaches with ½ the NRL clubs (8) having their first bye round.  No doubt everyone has had a good look at bye rounds when developing a strategy for the 2011 campaign and finalising your 25-man squad before the round 1 kick of on March 11. 

There is no point in talking about individual players before there is some form on the board so I’ll just point out a couple of other things for the newer coaches to Dream Team that you will need to take into consideration when finalising on your squad.  Continue reading

Dragons show no charity towards Bunnies

Four months after their drought-breaking premiership win, St George Illawarra have returned to the scene of their triumph to thump South Sydney 32-10 in the Charity Shield at ANZ Stadium. Despite missing up to half a dozen regulars, the Dragons were too fast, too strong and too smart for a disappointing Rabbitohs outfit. The Red V sent a strong message to rival clubs that they will again be up there in 2011 with a resounding six tries to two victory before 19,267 fans. It was St George Illawarra’s first Charity Shield win since 2007 and the perfect tune-up for their World Club Challenge showdown with Wigan in England on February 27. Both sides went into the biggest of the pre-season trial matches severely under-strength following a string of withdrawals prior to kick off. The Rabbitohs were without star off-season recruit Greg Inglis, Kiwi international Issac Luke and Sam Burgess while the Dragons’ absentees included Jamie Soward, Ben Hornby, Dean Young and Brett Morris. Continue reading

St George Illawarra have named the son of Parramatta great Mick Cronin in a squad containing 10 of their premiership stars for Sunday’s Charity Shield clash with South Sydney. Peter Cronin is among four recruits making their debuts for the Dragons, joining former Manly and Cronulla forward Adam Cuthbertson, Wests Tigers signing David Gower and ex-Penrith forward Daniel Penese at ANZ Stadium. The traditional fixture will also mark the return from long-term injury for prop Dan Hunt (Achilles), who has signed a new deal with the club, and outside back Ratu Peni Tagive (knee). Exciting young Dragons hooker Cameron King, who played one NRL match last season and was recently chosen in Ricky Stuart’s NSW Blues in waiting squad, has been given the opportunity to start at hooker. Assistant coach Steve Price will be in charge of the team with Wayne Bennett on NRL All Stars duty.

The Rabbitohs have named their strongest available line-up, with a long list of players sidelined by injury. Sam Burgess (shoulder), Greg Inglis (shoulder/hip), Issac Luke (shoulder), Michael Crocker (knee), Luke Stuart (shoulder), Jason Clark (hamstring) and Blake Judd (hamstring) are all out but are expected to be fit for the round one match against the Sydney Roosters. Prop Ben Ross will back up from the bench following his first game in nearly two years last weekend following a neck injury. Meanwhile, Hunt has agreed to a contract extension that will keep him at the Dragons until the end of 2013.Sunday’s game will be his first since rupturing his Achilles in the warm-up to the round 11 clash against Canberra at WIN Stadium last May. “It is pretty exciting times for me at the moment, to be returning to the field and also to secure my future here at the Dragons for a couple of extra years,” Hunt said. “It’s been a long recovery road but all the hard work will have paid off come Sunday when I get out there on the field.” The Rabbitohs will be looking to take home the Charity Shield for the fourth consecutive year.

Ben Ross gets the green light

South Sydney prop Ben Ross has been given the all clear to return to NRL action following a serious neck injury that threatened to end his career. The former Queensland and Cronulla front-rower sustained the injury playing for the Sharks in the 2009 season opener against Penrith. Souths signed the 30-year-old at the start of this season but Ross had been unable to satisfy his surgeon he had recovered sufficiently to get back on the field and is yet to appear for the Rabbitohs. However, with two games remaining, Ross will return to full training on Monday and is in contention to face Parramatta at ANZ Stadium next Friday.

Rabbitohs injury list grows

South Sydney’s jubilation has quickly become a reality check with star five-eighth John Sutton and lock Ben Lowe both ruled out for the rest of the injury-ravaged NRL club’s season. The Rabbitohs pulled off a miraculous last-second 34-30 golden point extra time win over the Wests Tigers on Saturday night, one of the famous club’s gutsiest considering 12 first-graders were on the sidelines. Lowe was among them, a late withdrawal after fracturing his foot in a freak training accident on Friday, bringing his impressive season to an end. Sutton dislocated his right shoulder in the first period of extra time and left the field in agony. It is the same shoulder he suffered an identical injury to in 2007, when he required surgery. Beau Champion succumbed to a cork above his knee in the side’s final training session while Colin Best is on a drip in hospital with a systemic blood infection suffered after he accidentally cut himself. Best is expected to leave hospital on Monday and the Rabbitohs are hopeful both he and Champion will play against Melbourne at AAMI Park next Sunday. Also back will be suspended English star Sam Burgess, utility Luke Capewell (knee) and possibly veteran forward Michael Crocker (quad). The Rabbitohs remain two points outside the top eight after debutant Dylan Farrell’s last-second golden-point try to down the Tigers. But the loss of their main playmaker in Sutton and an injury list which will still include Lowe, Luke Stuart (hand), Scott Geddes (knee), Dave Taylor (collarbone) and Beau Falloon (arm) will make it tough for the club to make the play-offs.