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Roosters not giving up on 2011 just yet

By Steve Jancetic 12/07/2011 07:06:07 PM Comments (0)

Sydney Roosters' skipper Braith Anasta won't look at the NRL ladder for fear of deepening his depression but admits a run at the top eight is not beyond last year's grand-finalists.

With just five wins from 16 games, the Roosters are propped up by only Gold Coast on the table, and at no point of 2011 have they resembled the form which made them last year's Cinderella story.

But a little swagger has crept back into the Roosters' gait, courtesy of Sunday's win over Penrith, which could take on John Travolta proportions on Saturday night with victory over local rivals South Sydney.

"The way we played on the weekend, sure it wasn't perfection, but I can really feel a bit of a buzz around the place at the moment. We've just got to try and win a few in a row," Anasta said.

"We know what we're capable of when we win a few in row and the momentum that we can get and the way that we can play.

"We got a glimpse of that on the weekend in patches."

A glimpse it might have only been but it's more than what Anasta has afforded the ladder as the losses piled up.

"I haven't looked at a ladder for a long, long time - it's not the best feeling when you're not travelling the best," Anasta said.

"For me, top eight calculations and all the rest haven't even been in the back of my mind. It's more just trying to win the next game.

"We've been so sick of losing and we know we're a much better team than where we're sitting on the table - that's probably the hardest thing, just trying to work out a reason why we're there."

More performances like the one they produced on Sunday and they won't be there for long.

A win over the Rabbitohs - two points above the Roosters on the ladder - and a few other results going their way could see the tri-colours end the weekend just two points out of the top eight.

It's a similar scenario over the coming weeks as well, with five of their last eight games against sides on the fringe of the top eight.

"It's a little bit strange - I didn't expect people to be asking me about the top eight after one win. That's because I haven't looked at the ladder for so long because I've been so depressed," Anasta said.

"There's no reason why we can't. Hopefully, if we do win two or three in a row, we come into calculations.

"People keep saying we're four points out of the eight, but not everyone's going to lose ahead of us either - you've got to string three or four together and life changes."

Either way, the Roosters' prospects certainly look a lot brighter now than they did a week ago, when they were coming off a mauling at the hands of Canberra.

Asked if that was the lowest of lows in what has been a dismal 2011, Anasta said "I think we've hit the bottom a few times, unfortunately, but the team keeps showing character and no one's throwing in the towel.

"There is a lot of character in our team and that is why I believe we can be dangerous over the back end of the season."

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