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The race for South Sydney’s two 2016 prop-forward positions for Round 1 is over, with Dave Tyrrell and Sam Burgess named to head up the Club’s engine-room against the Roosters this Sunday at Allianz Stadium.
Boasting a total of 229 Rabbitohs/NRL games experience between them (Burgess 96 and Tyrrell 133 games), the Rabbitohs won’t be short of go-forward despite missing English international props, George and Thomas Burgess.
In season 2015, Tyrrell made a total of 1783 metres with the ball off 209 runs, while also proving himself effective in defence by completing 509 tackles. Sam Burgess meanwhile – whose last season in the Red and Green was in 2014 – scored 10 tries for 40 points, averaging 35.2 tackles and a whopping 178.4 metres per game. Add in 66 tackle breaks, 13 line-breaks and 61 offloads, and Burgess was without doubt one of the side’s hardest working players in the Club’s Premiership year.
But it’s all about the here and now for the Michael Maguire-coached Rabbitohs, with Tyrrell telling Rabbitohs.com.au that he – along with all his teammates – have set themselves a number of personal goals that will ultimately benefit the team.
“Getting your game right is always a personal challenge, but I’ve set myself a number of goals in the back of my head, and that’s part of how I’ll be looking to contribute to this team in 2016,” said Tyrrell.
“During pre-season, there were a few cobwebs for sure, but it was a good opportunity for us to get our combinations right and play good footy to give ourselves the best chance to get picked in the 17.
“As a whole we were probably a bit rusty, but that’s a normal part of the process. We’ve gone back and looked at the areas that we can improve on, and we’ll be looking to get those things right on the field. We’ve got a long way to improve, but I think that’ll always be the case in this team – we keep raising the bar higher for ourselves and that can only be a good thing.”
On the traditional Rabbitohs v Roosters rivalry that has raged since 1908, Tyrrell is excited by the prospect of playing in the clash that means so much to so many.
“It’s a big rivalry because it’s so local I think,” said Tyrrell.
“Supporters of both teams live next door to each other, or go to school together pretty often around this area, so for the fans it’s bragging rights – they get into it with the banter and get really excited which is great to see.
“For us though, it’s about putting in our best performance every day at training and every week, and this week that happens to be against the Roosters.
“Were looking forward to the challenge of putting into practice what we’ve been doing at training.”
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