SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 22: Cooper Cronk of the Roosters holds his shoulder during the NRL Preliminary Final match between the Sydney Roosters and the South Sydney Rabbitohs at Allianz Stadium on September 22, 2018 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

Cooper Cronk will be given until the last minute to prove his fitness for Sunday’s NRL Grand Final.

Cronk is struggling to recover from an injury to his rotator cuff, which he suffered in the Roosters preliminary final win over South Sydney.

Roosters forward Victor Radley told The Daily Telegraph he would love to see Cronk play in the grand final even if he is not at his best.

“You’d want him on the field if he had one leg,” Radley said.

“For him to stay on the field is bloody courageous. It gives everyone a lift.”

“You see him out there, he couldn’t lift his arm out there.”

“When you look at him, still on the field, making tackles, you think to yourself if you’re tired ‘he’s a lot worse off than me and he’s still charging through’.”

“It definitely brings a lot, with his talk and things like that.”

The Roosters named veteran utility forward Mitchell Aubusson at halfback on Tuesday with Cronk and expected replacement Sean O’Sullivan named on an extended bench.

Roosters captain Boyd Cordner believes Cronk can dictate the final even if he is injured.

“Having Cooper out there not at 100 per cent, he showed how much he can have on a game still. It’s unreal,” Cordner told The Daily Telegraph. 

Despite his fitness, Cronk would give the Roosters a confidence boost if he takes the field, according to prop forward Sio Siua Taukeiaho.

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“He always turns up in the big moments. That’s why everyone loves to be Cooper… when kids are kicking balls around back home they call themselves Cooper Cronk,” Taukeiaho said.

“Just having him in the side, the way he talks, the way he goes about his game, the way he organises us players. It gets us pumped.”


  1. If Cooper Cronk can’t play his natural game then he shouldn’t play, If he cant run to the line and off load just before impact or unable to produce cut out passes, grubber to the in goal , bomb, 40-20, field goals etc. etc. etc. The Roosters have a halfback who can play a similar role as Cronk. The Roosters need to make sure they do not weaken their bench from big forwards and risk playing both halves for half a game each. Matterson as a 5/8 was haplessly slow and our centres did not get clean ball. If the Roosters change their 5/8 it will damage two positions, They need to do what they have been doing all year.

  2. Storm will have their own reasons to play well.
    Slater’s last game and Smith to announce 1 day before game will be his last as well.
    More than enough to motivate any team.

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