Roosters coach Trent Robinson says he has been planning for the possiblity that the premiers could meet Souths two weeks in a row.
Sydney Roosters coach Trent Robinson has been readying his side for a “bizarre” schedule that could pit them against arch-rivals South Sydney in successive weeks.
If Manly beat North Queensland in Townsville on Saturday night, the Roosters and the Rabbitohs will meet in the opening week of the finals next week, after the premiers’ 22-18 win over Souths on Thursday put them atop the NRL ladder for at least 48 hours.
Robinson said after the world champions’ final round win that back-to-back battles with their neighbours was something he had been anticipating.
“It’s bizarre that you play two weeks in a row if we play Souths again next week,” Robinson said.
“Without going into it, we planned as coaches that we would play them two weeks in a row so it went into our preparation a little bit.
“Without straying in any way from what we usually do, that had to be part of our planning.
“The script will be different though, you’re playing the same team, you’ll see the same plays but you can’t rely on this week at all.”
Robinson said the Roosters hadn’t held anything back, because of what might lie ahead of them.
“We don’t have any tricks, people know how we play,” he said.
“We had a five-day turnaround; most guys didn’t train until yesterday.”
The Roosters will claim the minor premiership for the second successive year if the Cowboys win, with their finals week-one opponent dependent on other results in round 26.
But Robinson said he wasn’t fussed if Manly win or not.
“There’s no team that you are wishing to play next week,” he said.
“We’re not looking for any favours, we’ll play whoever we play. I didn’t get excited last year, I’m not going to get excited this year about that.”
“We work so hard to get into an eight-team (playoffs) competition, it’s about to start again.”