Taumalolo ‘as good as you’ll see’
THE Melbourne Storm won’t be doing anything to agitate North Queensland wrecking ball Jason Taumalolo before Sunday’s grand final at ANZ Stadium.
Instead, the overwhelming premiership favourite plans to curb the Cowboys enforcer’s influence on the decider by attacking in numbers.
“One thing, you don’t call him out,” Storm assistant coach Jason Ryles said.
“You don’t poke the bear, so that’s just silly. I think that’s been tried before.
“I don’t think you do stop him, I just think you try and limit his impact as much as you can and we have a plan around that.
“It’s one thing saying it and another thing doing it.”
The Roosters experienced firsthand the dangers of calling out Taumaolo before the preliminary final.
The Cowboys’ metre machine feasted on the Roosters, charging 256 metres – 99 metres further than the next best.
Ryles concedes it’s impossible to stop Taumalolo (pictured) completely.
“We’ve played him quite a bit over the last three or four seasons in big games so we’ve never been able to stop him,” he said.
“He’s a once-in-ageneration type of player – he’s big, powerful, he’s got footwork but then he also plays big minutes as well and he doesn’t get sloppy around the ruck, so he’s as good as you’ll see as far as a middle forward.”
— Gilbert Gardiner