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Chris McQueen celebrates his try. AAP Image/Action Photographics, Renee McKay

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The game was supposed to be all about a new dawn for the Sydney Roosters and the glorious return of Sonny Bill Williams.

Instead it ended up being the tale of South Sydney’s 28-10 win and showing they’ll certainly be a force to be reckoned with in 2013 and in Greg Inglis the Rabbitohs have arguably the best player in the competition at their disposal.

Inglis was magnificent, having a hand in four of his side’s five tries – three of which were scored by Nathan Merritt.

Forwards Sam Burgess and Ben Te’o were superb for the visitors as was Adam Reynolds, who outshone opposite halfback Mitchell Pearce with an accomplished display.

Williams entered the fray on the 30-minute mark and was greeted with some verbals from Burgess, who then ran over the giant Kiwi, giving him a warm welcome back to the game he walked out on in 2008.

The former Canterbury star did score a late try to add an element of respectability to the scoreline and was solid in defence and will be better for the run.

Souths coach Maguire was delighted with his side’s display and heaped praise on his forwards and Reynolds.

“They (the forwards) were clinical for us. I thought all our front-rowers stood up,” he said.

“The Reyno understands the game and the balance he has between pushing a pass or putting a kick in goal, it’s a big thing for the team.

“Adam’s up there with (the best) with the ability with his kicking. He’s one of the best kickers in the game.”

Roosters coach Trent Robinson bemoaned his side’s ill-discipline but said he was pleased with Williams’ contribution after he played the final 50 minutes.

“It was great to see him back,” Robinson said.

“We saw some stuff where he needs to get used to the game again and then we saw him trying to really push hard to try and get us back into the game as well so I was really pleased.”

“I saw some really good stuff with the ball and some good push and he was looking to create some stuff so I think that’s the Sonny that we know.

“It’s going to take a couple of weeks but it was nice to have him out there.”

Merritt admitted he was unsure if he’d even play the game after being dropped for being late for training before the Charity Shield against St George Illawarra.

“I was pretty sad at the time and I didn’t think I’d get back in the side as Bryson (Goodwin) played well,” Merritt said.

“I thought I was going to start the year in first division and got pretty down on myself.

“It was case of picking myself up and being more professional.”

Chris McQueen and George Burgess also crossed for Souths with James Maloney going over after three minutes for the Roosters.

Michael Jennings was placed on report for a high shot on Beau Champion and Sam Burgess was sanctioned for a shoulder charge on Mitchell Pearce.

© AAP 2018

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The Crowd Says (28)

  • March 8th 2013 @ 7:02am
    Lou said | March 8th 2013 @ 7:02am | ! Report

    Souths played tough, but the big difference is they played smart!! They really look powerful and well oiled this year, you can see a “Melbourne” style in there play, roosters weren’t to bad, Jennings made plenty of busts but they lacked timing,discipline ,Sonny wasn’t to bad either, but I cannot see him setting the world on fire like the many predictions that have been made, yes he will be a good acquisition but he’s no X factor , a good game to kick off 2013 now lets see how the “to old now” go tonight against the toads , GO MANLY

  • March 8th 2013 @ 7:41am
    B.A Sports said | March 8th 2013 @ 7:41am | ! Report

    Reynolds short kicking game is excellent, but his long kicking game is still pretty poor. There were three times he didn’t hit Mini or Tupou on the chest with long kicks. One went out on the full the other two dead in goal by 10metres. Just wanted to throw that in before any Rabbits fans start telling us he should be in a Blue jumper. Actually, Mitchell Pearce went pretty well in a team that was obviously still getting to know each other and was getting crushed by officials.

    • March 8th 2013 @ 8:55am
      Thunder said | March 8th 2013 @ 8:55am | ! Report

      Reynolds had a blindfold on his wad for tch second half BA. And you are kidding yourself if you think Pearce went went well !

  • March 8th 2013 @ 7:43am
    Godfrey said | March 8th 2013 @ 7:43am | ! Report

    Ironical that on the same day that their football team began the season with such promise, the 50-year-old South Sydney Leagues Club went into administration unable to pay its bills. Since members accepted the redevelopment proposal of Russell Crowe and Peter Holmes a Court in 2006, the leagues club was closed from March 2007 until it re-opened in January 2012. Russell and Peter promised leagues club members a fully-owned, debt-free club with $4.5 million in the bank plus a Rabbitoh Hall of Fame, but all we got was debt, broken promises and, now, receivership. Success on the field, but failure off it, for the Bunnies.

  • March 8th 2013 @ 8:25am
    KFC said | March 8th 2013 @ 8:25am | ! Report

    Souths wouldn’t be in my top 15 favourite NRL teams but last night, they we’re impressive, Ingis was a class above the rest, and if mr ego Sam burgess could just stop admiring himself on the big screen, i think i might actually warm to him, Young Adam renyolds played brilliantly, I think Pearce will be under severe pressure to retain the NSW no 7 jersey this year along with Sutton possibly wearing no 6.
    As for the roosters, it was always going to be a matter of a work in progress and not immediate results. Jennings showed what will happen when he gels properly with the rest of them, SBW was quiet but hardly put a foot wrong, I think the chooks will improve under Robinson but it will take a while. First things first though is the penalty count, AGAIN, 3 of the needless penalties resulted in Souths tries, I really hope Robinson has Jake friend up early this morning doing laps of Moore park on his own, HUD Gould is correct, it’s about respect!

    • March 8th 2013 @ 8:43am
      B.A Sports said | March 8th 2013 @ 8:43am | ! Report

      KFC, they actually scored five of their six tries off the back of penalties last night. That was how Souths scored all their points last year as well. Something like more than half of their tries came off sets that started form penalties while the average for the rest of the comp is like 25%. They (for some reason) get lots of free rides off of the back of knit pick penalties which don’t seem to be reciprocated and it puts them in good field position to attack. Problem is come finals when refs let the play go more and give fewer penalties, it will hurt them.

      • March 8th 2013 @ 9:00am
        Thunder said | March 8th 2013 @ 9:00am | ! Report

        Obviously a disgruntled Roosters fan. Souths were comprehensive winners, Roosters were poor. The Roosters always give away too many penalties, because they are a disorganised rabble and ave been for the last 5 years.

        • March 8th 2013 @ 9:56am
          B.A Sports said | March 8th 2013 @ 9:56am | ! Report

          Obviously…. insert eye role.. I couldn’t care less about the Roosters. Souths were the better team, they got the rub of the green on numerous calls, and that helps them.- it always helps them. The Roosters have some promise, they just need to play together a bit more and the errors should come down. But if the Roosters get some penatlies for markers not square, or for slowing down of play the balls, then maybe they get a few more attacking sets, score one or two more tries, get some momentum and you have a different game. Souths were the better team, but they were expected to be and weren’t that much better.

      • Roar Guru

        March 8th 2013 @ 9:01am
        Dogs Of War said | March 8th 2013 @ 9:01am | ! Report

        I think the penalties were just. The Roosters have a serious discipline problem they need to correct.

        Souths won’t get such an easy ride in a game for the rest of the year, Roosters exposed a lot of holes in Souths, and another team will be able to take advantage of that.

    • March 8th 2013 @ 3:48pm
      Lost Earthling said | March 8th 2013 @ 3:48pm | ! Report

      What surprised me most about last nights refereeing was that no penalty was given for a deliberate forward pass from SBW. I’m thinking the refs may have been a little shocked that someone could have thrown the ball that far forward but if ever there was a cse for a penalty for a deliberate forward pass that was it.

  • March 8th 2013 @ 9:20am
    oikee said | March 8th 2013 @ 9:20am | ! Report

    McQueen was outstanding, he is in the emerging Origin squad and it showed.

    • March 8th 2013 @ 2:02pm
      rl said | March 8th 2013 @ 2:02pm | ! Report

      oiks, I got rubbished last year for suggesting McQueen was ready to take the next step up. I say get on the train, or get under the train! Wooo-woooo!!!

      • March 8th 2013 @ 3:13pm
        oikee said | March 8th 2013 @ 3:13pm | ! Report

        Stand by your convictions you cant go wrong. And also admit your wrong at times. hehe.
        In this case you were spot-on. Well played. I rated him as well.

        • March 8th 2013 @ 3:28pm
          rl said | March 8th 2013 @ 3:28pm | ! Report

          mate, the last time I was right was when I tipped Robbie McCormack into a Kangaroos jersey. Long time between drinks!

    • March 8th 2013 @ 3:56pm
      Bearfax said | March 8th 2013 @ 3:56pm | ! Report

      I’ve thought he was a rising star a few years back Oikee. Yep McQueen is destined for higher honours.

  • March 8th 2013 @ 9:53am
    Arthur fonzarelli. said | March 8th 2013 @ 9:53am | ! Report

    Every time I see one of the burgess brothers , I visualise them saying “pikies , ah fookin ‘ate pikies ” .

    • March 8th 2013 @ 10:53am
      buddha9 said | March 8th 2013 @ 10:53am | ! Report

      very funny man spot on!

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