Sydney Roosters Head Coach Trent Robinson has placed emphasis on understanding family support as a burning motivation for his side after the NRL has given the green light for clubs to reunite with the playing group in their southeast Queensland bubble.
The three-time Premiership winning coach also praised the form of the younger contingent of the team who are looking to build momentum heading into the final stages of the regular rounds.
After a fortnight in their Sunshine Coast bubble, Robinson delved into how his playing squad and staff have used their time away from friends and family as motivation in getting the job done on the field.
“We understood we had to get away and keep playing," he said.
“We’ve got a job to do to play each weekend, but everyone’s got their own story about their family unit; whether it’s a newborn baby or young kids and a partner.
“People have to understand that the support of the family unit is so important in performance. We just saw Giannis (Antetokounmpo) win the NBA Championship and talk about family and his unit, how important it was and how he went straight to his family (following the win).
“That’s no different in any of our players. The support that is needed in the family unit can really help. To get that and see the NRL work so hard to support us to do our jobs has been remarkable.
Coach's Media - Round 19
“We understand that you have to understand every person has a different story because every story is different especially at the moment.
"There’s 41 of us and we’ve all got one task to do every weekend – perform for the Roosters – but there’s 41 different stories so for myself being in tune with that but others in the group understanding those 41 different stories is important.”
The Roosters’ backline takes a slightly different shape as Billy Smith retains his spot in the centres, while Josh Morris has been named on the extended bench – but Robinson insists that it is an opportunity for a rookie to continue his current form and a veteran to get some well-earned rest after featuring in all but one match this season.
“I’ve been a fan of Billy for a long time,” said Robinson.
“I like the way that he trains, he’s got a hardness and intensity about the way that he trains. He turns up every single session and I liked the way that he attacked the game on the weekend.
“He’s still learning the game at NRL level, but he played with a consistency in that game and took his moments as well; he scored a try, made a break out in the back field and came up with some high quality plays as well.
“It was a good re-introduction to the NRL.
“Josh has had a lot of games in a row so it’s a good opportunity for him to take a break. He’s taken it really well as a well-experienced guy can.
“It’s really disappointing but he understands, and he’s gotten back to training and work and we’ve been able to hang out a lot as a team. It’s not what he wants, but it’s also about getting some time and then getting back to work.”
I want an intelligent, thinking team on the field that’s got hardness about it. I saw the embers, but we’ve got to keep stoking it each week. We’re starting to get a group of troops back at this time of year so we’re in a good place physically.Trent Robinson Roosters Head Coach
With two consecutive victories to build upon, the Roosters' mentor says he is looking forward to seeing the continued development of his side in the final weeks of the regular season.
“You can play Rugby League each week but not see what you want to see or see the essence of the game that you really want to play," he said.
“I saw the essence of the game that we want to continue to play and greenness in us in the way that we went about it.
“But we had some hardness there as well; from 12-nil down and the patience we had at 14-12 to sit there through a period of time.
“To be honest, I really want to build on that. I really want to continue to build that as a team. I really want young and old to really understand how we want to play as a team.
“I want an intelligent, thinking team on the field that’s got hardness about it. I saw the embers, but we’ve got to keep stoking it each week.
“We’re starting to get a group of troops back at this time of year so we’re in a good place physically.”
More on Roosters.com.au