Tag Archive: David Simmons

Michael Jennings in doubt

Penrith star Michael Jennings admits he came back a week too early after re-injuring his hamstring in Sunday’s embarrassing 42-8 NRL loss to Newcastle. The NSW Origin centre wasn’t originally named in coach Matt Elliott’s side but was rushed in at the last minute at the expense of David Simmons. Jennings said he was never 100 per cent fit and after twinging his hamstring late in the match admitted he was now in major doubt for Friday night’s showdown with Parramatta. The 22-year-old revealed during the pre-season how much he despised the Eels as the Panthers’ local rivals, and as he iced up his right hamstring after Sunday’s match, declared he would do everything he could to play. But as he cast a lonely figure as the last man in the Penrith sheds, Jennings regretted the early return and conceded he faced an uphill battle to be fit for Friday night. “I think I came back maybe one week too early,” Continue reading


McKendry set for a big season

Ask Penrith coach Matt Elliott and skipper Petero Civoniceva who they have high hopes for in 2011 and they will tell you Sam McKendry. “Man, he was unbelievable the other night [in our trial],” said Elliott, who last season watched Sam McKendry go from a fringe first-grader to Kiwi international. “At the beginning of last year I thought Sam was going to be a first-grader, we might get 10 games out of him, but he played every game and turned himself into an international.
“Our two young props, him and Tim Grant, are highly impressive players, they’re good people, they’ll drive the squad along and I think they will be a handful.” A little over 12 months ago McKendry was told he was too big, would struggle to succeed in the NRL if he failed to shed the kilos. Continue reading

Elliott doesn’t want to discard Pritchard

Penrith Panthers Coach Matthew Elliott expects forward Frank Pritchard ($180,800 2RF) to have his best season yet, and with contract negotiations opened he is hopeful his contract will be extended long after the 2011 expiration of his current commitment. Ptitchard’s loyalty was tested when it was rumoured he wasn’t happy at the club and wanted out, but Eliott said those kind of attitude issues were a thing of the past for the 26 year old. The Panthers will compete in their first trial match against Parramatta at CUA Stadium on Saturday, the team is set to have most of the new recruits on deck – Kevin Kingston($167,700 HOK), Travis Burns ($155,000 HLV), backs David Simmons ($98,100 CTW/FLB) and Adrian Purtell ($112,200 CTW) and forward Nigel Plum ($146,900 2RF) all hoping to impress and secure starting berths come round 1 of the season. “At the back-end of the pre-season I don’t really see them as new recruits any more, I just see them as part of the squad.” Eliott said. Daine Laurie ($91,100 FRF) will be missing this weekend while he nurses a broken toe, but is expected to play against Newcastle in Port Macquarie on February 27.