Banished guru Grothe back for Eels - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Banished guru Grothe back for Eels

By Steve Jancetic 03/02/2009 05:53:07 PM Comments (0)

Banished to park football under an avalanche of inept displays, Eric Grothe's NRL purgatory finally appears over under new Parramatta coach Daniel Anderson.

Reunited with the man who mentored him as a 14-year-old in the Harold Matthews Cup way back in 1995, Grothe's passion for the game appears renewed after all seemed lost midway through 2008.

One of the game's most damaging ball-runners at his best, Grothe was at his worst in 2008.

A poor attitude at training transformed into some NRL shockers - Grothe going from NSW flanker one season to the wings of Wentworthville in the NSW Cup the next.

But under Anderson, the 'Guru' appears to be back on track.

"His attitude's been first class since I got here," Anderson said.

"I've known Eric for a long time, I coached him when he was 14 and I've got a bit of a history with him.

"I don't know, if that lent itself to anything but he's pretty comfortable with me.

"He's trained exceptionally well during the off-season, very, very well."

Questions over Grothe's commitment to his rugby league career are nothing new, particularly when it comes to representative football.

He once turned up late to a City Origin medical which resulted in him being ruled out and in 2007 he was axed from an Australian train-on squad after he failed to turn up to a training session.

Asked if Grothe's past problems had been mentioned between the pair, Anderson said:

"I don't know what they did last year, I've come in here with no real preconceptions."

With giant winger Tony Williams having departed for Manly, at least one of the wing spots appears available heading into the trials, with Parramatta to open up against Penrith in Griffith on February 14.

Grothe's chances are likely to depend on who gets the nod at fullback and in the centres with Krisnan Inu, Jarryd Hayne, Ben Smith, Taulima Tautai, Luke Burt and Joel Reddy all in contention for backline berths.

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