Demetriou new role in the centres
Going into the second half against Brisbane at Suncorp Stadium in round 13 of the Holden Cup competition this season, Manly Coach David Heath was forced to move the mobile front-rower to the centres due to injuries.
The move paid off immediately when Demetriou jumped high to take a crossfield kick to score next to the posts.
“He was dynamic there and made heaps of metres,’’ Heath later explained.
Prior to his positional switch, Demetriou had scored just one try in 11 matches as he applied his trade up front in the engine room.
Soon, Demetriou became a strike weapon. In just his second game in the centres, he scored a double in the win over Wests Tigers.
He went on to record five more doubles and also a hat-trick to register 21 tries in 26 matches prior to last Sunday’s Grand Final loss to Penrith.
Along the way, his powerful running style, strong fend and his ability to leave a trail of destruction saw him become a favourite amongst supporters.
Suddenly, ‘The Steamroller’ was born.
“It was a big decision from our coach at the time to move me. I remember we were joking about it at training at one stage and then it happened against the Broncos,’’ Demetriou said.
“I have loved every minute out there in the centres and you also get a bit of a rest.
“But I know I need to work more on my fitness especially if I need to go back to the forwards.”
As to where Demetriou best fits in, that will be a decision for new Sea Eagles Head Coach Trent Barrett when pre-season training begins in the first week of November.
Demetriou is not fazed as to which position he plays his senior football in.
“If I get the chance later on to play first grade, I will play wherever they put me,’’ he smiled.
Either way, ‘The Steamroller’ will blow more ‘steam’ next season.
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