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Momirovski and Watson Excited for Next Chapter in Bondi

After beginning their careers in Bondi, Paul Momirovski and Connor Watson have come home in search of Premiership glory in the Red, White and Blue.

Season 2021 saw the pair embark on their own unique journeys back to the Club - Momirovski returning after his own Premiership triumph, while Watson’s travel ambitions to Europe’s Super League were put on hold after a heart-to-heart with Head Coach Trent Robinson.

Despite navigating their way back to Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs in two distinct ways, both have one clear goal in mind – to bring the Premiership trophy back to Moore Park for the sixteenth time.

And so far for the duo, it has been an exciting initiation back at Moore Park. 

“It’s been two days, you can’t really judge too much but it’s been great,” Momirovski said.

Paul Momirovski: "I'm Loving It"

“There are a lot of the same faces from when I was here a few years ago, it’s been really welcoming and they’ve made me feel comfortable already and the training has been good so far.

“It’s the Club I started my journey with, I was here for five years and it kind of leaves a big imprint on you. I came straight out of high school here, and did most of my development at this Club.

“To come back at this stage with a little bit more experience under my belt and with a little bit of a different perspective coming back this time, I’m loving it.”

There’s been so much success here for the last ten years, even before that. It’s one of the founding clubs too since the start. The tradition of that is just as cool and as much of a drawcard as the success of the last few years.

Connor Watson Roosters 2022 Recruit

“It’s really good, really exciting,” Watson beamed.

“I was saying to Paulie before, you feel like the new kid, but also not. There are so many familiar faces and it’s just good to be back and around the boys.

“I’m really happy with the decision I made; it’s going to be the best for my footy and hopefully I can take my game to the next level here.

“For me personally this is the Club where I came through and was developed. I would love to win a comp here at the Roosters.

“There’s been so much success here for the last ten years, even before that. It’s one of the founding clubs too since the start. The tradition of that is just as cool and as much of a drawcard as the success of the last few years.”

For 25-year-old Momirovski - who played a part in the Club's 2018 Premiership with a memorable try in the Preliminary Final in just his second game in the NRL - the chance to add to the Roosters' trophy cabinet after his own success with Penrith in 2021 was an opportunity he wants to take with two hands.

“The year I debuted here in 2018 we won the comp that year. I didn’t take the field but to see that actually happen at this Club and to try and do it again, that’s definitely the goal," he said. 

“But when I did leave I was always hopeful that I’d come back and it’s just worked out like it has. I couldn’t be happier to be fair."

In Watson's case, it was a matter of where to turn next to further his career, and while the lure of playing in the Super League and travelling Europe was certainly an option, it was a heart-to-heart chat with Trent Robinson that has found him back in Bondi in a new role that could revolutionise the role of the utility player. 

Watson: "I'm Really Happy With The Decision I Made"'

“Those conversations were really exciting," Waston said. 

“Initially I went to him to get advice from a friend. Robbo coached over in the Super League and I was considering my options to go over there.

“He just sort of said to me that it wasn’t my time yet, and the way the game is evolving and getting faster that a player like me – someone who’s versatile and can play in multiple positions – is only going to be more valuable.

“Initially it was something I didn’t really like, having that tag of being a utility, but as my career has evolved I actually see it as a really good thing, being able to slot in any position and play the same way; whether that’s in the front row or out in the centres or in the halves.

“As that conversation evolved, he wondered if he could get me to the Roosters and a couple of years later it sort of worked out - I realised my place was to play here in the NRL, and it just turns out to be here in Sydney.

“Robbo’s one of the best coaches in the game and he’s done a terrific job and developed so many players; even the guys I came through with in the under 20s, how their footy has gone and the heights they have reached is really exciting.

“Playing under him hopefully I’ll take the next step.”

The chance to play alongside former teammates and a host of young, up and comers is another bright spot for Watson, while Momirovski admits he hasn't made a decision on taking up the goalkicking duties. 

“You look at the teamlist and it’s got some terrific players,” Watson said.

“I’m looking forward to playing alongside guys who weren’t here when I was here back in 2016-2017. As bad as the injury toll was last year, it gave a really good opportunity for some young kids to come through and get a lot of games that they would have if that didn’t happen.

The year I debuted here in 2018 we won the comp that year. I didn’t take the field but to see that actually happen at this Club and to try and do it again, that’s definitely the goal.

Paul Momirovski Roosters 2022 Recruit

“I think the depth of the squad is also just as exciting as the top-end talent, and I’m keen to get out there and play alongside everyone.”

“Definitely not, it’s day two!” Momirovski laughed when asked about taking over with the boot.

“I haven’t done any kicking yet, I can’t comment on that. There’s quality all over the park here, there always has been since I first got here.

“It is exciting, being able to pull on the jersey alongside players like that, anyone in the comp would say it’s a good thing.”