With star playmaker Todd Carney sidelined by a groin injury until the season-opening clash with South Sydney on March 11, Roosters coach Brian Smith has opted to give rookie Mark Kheirallah the No.6 jersey for Saturday night’s Foundation Cup clash with Wests Tigers at the SFS rather than play Anasta at five-eighth.
But after admitting towards the end of last season that he was struggling to come to terms with the move into the forwards, Anasta said he was now comfortable wearing the No.11 jersey.
Anasta’s switch in to the back row to accommodate Carney at five-eighth in the second half of last season sparked speculation that the former NSW Origin representative was either on the outer at the club or would leave. But Anasta said that after kicking the remarkable last-second field goal that forced their finals match against Wests Tigers into golden point and kept the Roosters’ season alive that he didn’t want to play anywhere else.
Despite further speculation about his future during the off-season, Anasta again said yesterday he did not want to play for another club and revealed that talks with Roosters management had been positive.
Anasta also backed his former Bulldogs teammate Matt Utai to make a successful comeback to the NRL after finalising a one-year deal with the Tigers.