The return of Sydney Roosters enforcer Victor Radley only further strengthens their forward pack and makes it harder for the Gold Coast Titans to win in Saturday night’s elimination final at Townsville’s Queensland Country Bank Stadium, according to True Blue Steve Roach.
Radley was on the fringe of selection for the Brydens Lawyers NSW Blues side in 2021 but a five-week suspension for a high tackle in Round 11 ended his State of Origin hopes. Then a further three-week dangerous contact charge after Round 22 ended his regular club season prematurely.
Saturday night’s final is his first game back from suspension where he will join forces with Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, Sam Verrills, Sia Taukeiaho, Angus Crichton, and Sitili Tupouniua. All except Tupouniua won the 2019 NRL Grand Final over Canberra.
“The Roosters – at the right time of the year – are starting to get their pack right,” Roach told Behind Blue Eyes for nswrl.com.au.
“I think it might be a long afternoon for the Titans. Getting that forward pack back to the way they can play, I don’t think (Titans) have the ammunition in their forwards to beat the Roosters.”
But Roach hopes Radley has adjusted his approach to defence slightly to make sure he doesn’t face the NRL judiciary again, without losing his sting against opposing sides.
“I think (Radley) has come to the realisation, since he’s been suspended a couple of times this year for the same thing, that the game isn’t what it used to be,” he said.
“Maybe he’s got to lower his tackle technique.
“But I love the way Victor Radley plays and the aggression he brings to the Roosters.”