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Sixes to Sevens: Luke Keary Relishing Halves Shift in 2021

He's won three Premierships as a five-eighth, but Luke Keary is confident in owning the halfback role in 2021.  

It's been the question every Roosters and Rugby League fan has had on their minds heading into the new year - who will don the famous no.7 for the Tricolours this season?

Plenty predicted young Lachlan Lam to take up the vacancy - who's father Adrian wore the very same jersey at the turn of the century - but in a show of faith to his star half, Head Coach Trent Robinson has handed the reigns to Keary, who says the move was planned at the conclusion of 2020.

Keeping it simple: Keary says he is looking forward to managing the side while keeping his dynamic running and passing game.
Keeping it simple: Keary says he is looking forward to managing the side while keeping his dynamic running and passing game.

"We made that decision at the end of last season," Keary confirmed.

"We've got a great group of sixes in Lachy Lam, Drew Hutchison and Sammy Walker coming through. It's been a bit of a natural transition that was always going to happen for me.

"It's exciting. As a no.7, your game management goes up a bit so I'll be doing a little more kicking and managing the team this year, but my overall game won't change too much."

Luke Keary Relishing Halves Shift in 2021

Now in his fifth season at the Club, the 29-year-old says that despite his status in the side, he is still yet to view himself as a mentor - while citing the experience of teammates and the capabilities of the halves contenders as the foundation for a strong season. 

"Not really," he laughed when questioned of a possible mentoring role. 

"I think everyone's pretty good here. We've got a good older crew here with Jake Friend and Jared (Waerea-Hargreaves) and other senior boys too. 

"I won't have to do too much mentoring; Drewy (Drew Hutchison) and Lachy (Lachlan Lam) especially have been here for a fair few years now and know what's going on.

It's exciting. As a no.7, your game management goes up a bit so I'll be doing a little more kicking and managing the team this year, but my overall game won't change too much.

Luke Keary Roosters Halfback

"Having a younger crew coming through always brings in a lot of energy and enthusiasm. Having three halves going at each other - and Adam Keighran who can slot in too - they're all really good young players, and they'll all get a chance through the season."

Despite not having to travel overseas to contend for a World Club Challenge for the first time in two years, Keary insists that the Roosters' new-look pre-season has been beneficial for both his own game and for the squad as a whole. 

"We weren't in before Christmas and we've had a big six-week block," he explained.

"The boys are ready for our trial (against the Canberra Raiders), it's been a really productive six weeks and we're getting a lot out of it. 

"I find pre-season is more about getting your own game right for the team and the start of the season. I've been pretty focused on what I'm doing and bringing my best footy to the team."