Getting to NRL grand final 'no surprise' - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Getting to NRL grand final 'no surprise'

By Ian McCullough 26/09/2010 05:17:41 PM Comments (0)

It is fair to say at the start of the year no-one in their right mind would have predicted the Sydney Roosters could win the NRL premiership - apart from Roosters winger Sam Perrett that is.

Ahead of the opening round of the season in March, only Cronulla trailed the Bondi club in the pre-season betting, with the TAB quoting them at $26 for a first premiership since 2002 following a disastrous 2009 campaign.

However, for Perrett, who was part of the Roosters side that claimed a first wooden spoon since 1966 last year, it took just one training session under new coach Brian Smith to convince him they could go all the way.

"Every season you go into the season believing you can beat anyone, you have to otherwise there is no point playing the game," Perrett told AAP.

"But I can honestly say with the players that came in like Todd Carney and Jared Waerea-Hargreaves and having Mini (Anthony Minichiello) back and fully fit I thought we really could go all the way.

"Brian came in and gave us a self-belief that had been lacking and he should take a lot of credit for where we are now."

Perrett was one of the heroes in the Roosters' 32-6 preliminary final win over the Gold Coast on Friday, scoring two tries, and the 26-year-old said the mood in the camp is the best he has known since making his debut in 2004.

"I am not saying that we are definitely going to win, but there is nothing to suggest we can't," he said.

"We are playing well, we have the momentum and in Smithy we have a great coach who is vastly experienced."

Halfback Mitchell Pearce was left nursing a sternum injury as well as a corked thigh after the Titans game, but the NSW playmaker said the prospect of playing in a grand final was the perfect cure.

"It hasn't really sunk in yet," Pearce told AAP.

"When you are a kid you watch grand final day on TV and you always want to be part of it.

"I wouldn't say I have been jealous of watching other teams, but you do wish one day that you get the chance and now I will."

The 21-year-old said the first person he spoke to after the game was his father, former NSW captain Wayne Pearce, who skippered Balmain to successive grand finals in 1988 and `89.

"We haven't really chatted about what to expect or what the week will be like leading up to the game, but I am sure I will see for myself and I can't wait," Pearce said.

"It has been a fantastic year and now we have the chance to finish it off in the best possible way."

Brought to you by AAP AAP © 2023 AAP

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