James Tedesco knows the Sydney Roosters cannot lose their cool like they did the last time they played South Sydney and Bondi public enemy No.1 Jai Arrow.
Arrow made an immediate impact on the game’s oldest rivalry when punched in the back of the head by rookie Rooster Daniel Suluka-Fifita, then waved to him as he was being sin-binned in round two.
The Souths and Queensland representative forward revealed after the game he had deliberately stayed down for a penalty and told the Herald at the time: “I felt the back of my jersey come up and the fist in the back of my head. It didn’t hurt me at all, but I thought, ‘I’ll make him [Suluka-Fifita] pay for this’. I stayed down and once I heard the ref blow the whistle I pointed at him and said, ‘See you champ, you’re off’.“
Tedesco said at the time his Roosters teammates were standing up for him after Arrow rag-dolled him while concussed during Origin III late last year. Come Friday night, Tedesco expected his pack to show more restraint, including Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, who conceded two costly penalties against Souths that night.
“There’s definitely been no focal point about him [Arrow] this week,” Tedesco said. “Obviously there was a bit from what happened last year [in Origin], and the boys took that personal.
“It bit us in the backside when we had someone sin-binned. It’s been a big focus has been to not play with emotion, it has got the best of us sometimes … for us it’s about getting the job done with no emotion attached and doing what we have to do.
“Jared fires up quite a bit. It’s not really abnormal for him to get angry or aggressive, that’s his natural nature on the field. Idon’t think we’ll see anything like that again, it will be the natural competition between us and Souths.”
One player who will not feature against the Roosters is winger Josh Mansour, who is out for the rest of the year with a knee injury, Souths captain Adam Reynolds confirmed.