Final Word with Hook: Round 3
Panthers coach Anthony Griffin reveals the latest injury news and how his side will line up against Sydney Roosters.
On Bryce Cartwright's injury:
We had to re-scan him as he was in a lot of pain. Fortunately for him it's come back the same (result).
It's just a really bad bone bruise above the plate in his leg which is just recovering a little slower than we wanted it to. There's no major damage there, it's just going to take a little bit longer than what we thought.
On Cartwright's replacement:
James Fisher-Harris will play at right back-row spot. He did a great job last week and that's where he played all of last year.
On the return to Pepper Stadium:
It's good to be home. It's been an up and down couple of weeks but it's nice to be playing at home here and we're looking forward to the game.
On the turnaround in performance against Wests Tigers:
Whenever you keep anyone try-less in a game is an achievement at this level. Even though the Tigers weren't at their best, I thought we had a really solid 80 minute performance last week which is what we needed after the first week.
How the team turned it around:
We didn't play our best but St George played some really good football. We had our own issues that we had to deal with and I think that's the main thing – everyone was very honest in our assessment of how we went in that first week and we came back and fixed it.
Whether the players bought in to the hype surrounding the team in round one:
If that is what happened for anyone individually then it's a good lesson. It certainly wasn't our approach as a team or club. As soon as you get comfortable at this level you're gone.
On the Roosters halves:
They're great. Mitchell Pearce, since he's come back, has been terrific. He's done everything in the game - won Premierships, played State of Origin and he's still relatively young. He's a great player.
Keary is an elite half and the two of them together blew the Titans away and then combined well early last week. They're obviously in great form and going to be a handful for us.
On the test the Panthers face against the Roosters:
It's a test for us and for them. They've always been strong and I’m sure it'll be a really good clash.
On the favouritism tag:
I don't feel anything (pressure). It doesn't mean anything and if anyone needed a reminder it doesn't mean anything, they got it in Round One.
On Tyrone Peachey’s performance in Round Two:
He was great. Put his body on the line a few times, a couple extra efforts with his quick restarts and different things like that. He’s developing in to a really good left centre.
On Peachey’s Origin prospects:
It’s too early to talk about Origin. He’s doing a good job for us. If you were picking it on form in Round One he wouldn’t have made too many Origin teams but he bounced back last week and did what he needed to do.
When can we consider Peachey as a permanent centre?
He keeps getting picked there every week, was player of the match last week and he’s left centre again this week.
On the potential return of Dallin Watene-Zelezniak:
He'll play. He got through Wednesday and today and it'll be good to have him back in the team.
On the halves battle:
It'll be a really good challenge for them (Martin and Cleary). They started to show glimpses in the second half last week and started to form an understanding with each other and how we want to play.
At times they'll get it right and at times they won't get it quite right but the only way to improve is getting out there in games like tomorrow night and doing their thing.
An update on Josh Mansour:
He's turned into a commentator – he's working for Channel 9! I haven’t seen him for a while…
He's going really well. He's on track for [returning in] round 12.
On Peta Hiku:
We got some really good news. He's got a hairline fracture in that eye socket area but didn’t require surgery and he’s getting close to being back on the field. We just have to be careful we don’t bring him back too early.