NRL Finals Week 2 live: Roosters Vs Raiders

The Canberra Raiders can claim some revenge for the 2019 Grand Final loss if they can end the Sydney Roosters’ season and hunt for a 37-year slice of history.

The Roosters are hoping to become the first team since the 1981-83 Parramatta Eels to win three straight grand finals.

The Raiders lost 14-8 as the Roosters went back to back but a reported feud was reignited between the Raiders’ Ricky Stuart and Roosters’ Trent Robinson.

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The feud dates back to a rather innocuous moment in a 2017 post-match press conference after the Raiders downed the Roosters during Origin period when the Roosters had five players out.

It led to a war of words with Robinson responding after the game when Stuart said he was tired of coaches complaining at Origin time because “they win grand finals because of rep players”.

Robinson responded: “Ricky recruits this team and he’s built this team to what he wants it to be. That’s up to them to get selected or not,” he said.

“He said a couple of weeks ago that got chased because of how well they played last year, they’re finding it tough this year. He obviously thinks they’re one of the top teams, so that’s their boat. We’ll look after ours.”

Ricky Stuart is the master of the subtle jabs.Source:FOX SPORTS

Then the was the tense standoff before last years’ grand final when Stuart and Robinson refused to shake hands or even look at each other.

But on Thursday morning, Stuart gave the perfect quote to just add a little more spice to the clash in away that only he could.

Often careful not to step over the line but taking aim when he needs to — such as when he took aim at the referees and NRL head of football on the eve of finals — Stuart seemingly took a sly shot at the Roosters and the often commented on “salary sombrero” while talking about his team make up.

“I was asking for them to be patient because we had to do it another way here,” Stuart said on Thursday morning.

“We couldn‘t just go out and buy rep players. We had to produce our own and generate our own momentum.

“I think when you look at it, Elliott (Whitehead) and John Bateman might have been the two representative players that we bought. Elliott many years ago.

John Bateman is looking to leave the NRL a winner.Source:Getty Images

“Others have grown into being representative players and grown off the back of each other‘s style of game here at the club. That part of the journey – albeit over a number of years – has been great to be a part of.”

Stuart also said “no disrespect to anybody, but my biggest fear is us”.

“If we turn up and play our best game of football, we‘re going to be in the fight. If we don’t turn up and have individuals playing their best game of footy, we won’t win. We won’t win any game, let alone a final.”

No doubt the Roosters, with many questioning their premiership credentials, would have heard the swipe loud and clear.

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