Caption: Tom Trbojevic could return from an ankle injury on Saturday night. Photo: NRL Photos
Manly Warringah Sea Eagles Coach Trent Barrett says Tom Trbojevic is a ‘fair chance’ of playing against the Brisbane Broncos at a sold out Suncorp Stadium tomorrow night.
Although not named in the team on Tuesday, Trbojevic tested his injured ankle out at the team’s final training session in Brisbane today. Pita Godinet also trained with the team.
“Tom has got an injury that can change day to day. We did bring him up here with an eye to playing him,’’ Barrett said.
“He did get through today but it will depend on how he pulls up tomorrow.
“I won’t play Tommy if he is not 100 per cent. He is 19-years-old. I certainly won’t be pushing him along too far.
“He is too important to us long term to do that to him, and I won’t. We will see how he is tomorrow.”
Barrett said full-back Brett Stewart was close to returning from a hamstring injury and said the side would also dearly miss centre Steve Matai who is out with a shoulder injury.
“Snake (Stewart) was nearly there and Matai has had an ongoing neck problem. We are going to miss them,’’ Barrett said.
“Steve Matai has probably been our best player, or our most consistent player, all season. Our outside backs have got to pick up the slack there. I’m confident they can do the job.”
Barrett said the players were excited about playing a home game at Suncorp in front of a crowd of more than 52,500 supporters as part of a double header following the clash between the Melbourne Storm and the Nth Qld Cowboys.
“It is going to be a good experience for a lot of our younger players who wouldn’t have played in front of a crowd this big before, and probably won’t until we get to a grand final, or they play State of Origin,’’ he added.
“We are looking at the positives. We have a pretty good record on the road. There will be no excuses here. We will rip into it tomorrow night. It is a great ground to play at in front of a full house. We have a lot of fans up here.”
Sea Eagles Captain Jamie Lyon said he would cherish playing on Suncorp Stadium possibly for the last time in his final season before retiring.
“It is always a great atmosphere at Suncorp,’’ Lyon said.
“I’m really looking forward to it, playing alongside a bit of a young team we have got. I’m sure the guys will be super keen just as I am.”