Adam Reynolds’ groin was “tender” on Saturday morning but will be a definite starter in his South Sydney swansong next Sunday.
It only emerged after Friday’s 36-16 win over Manly that Reynolds had injured his groin during the week, and was forced to let rookie teammate Blake Taaffe take over the goalkicking duties.
Coach Wayne Bennett conceded after the game they gambled on their halfback getting through the game unscathed.
“I think what he couldn’t do was kick. We didn’t know if he would get through the game either. We took the risk and we managed to pull it off,” Bennett said.
Reynolds felt tightness in his right groin towards the end of a training session last Tuesday, then underwent scans on Wednesday, which cleared him of a tear.
He was limited in what he could do during Thursday’s captain’s run, and only realised goal-kicking would be an issue after his first shot at goal during warm-up at Suncorp Stadium.
Souths physio Eddie Farah, the brother of Wests Tigers legend Robbie Farah, was the man wearing the orange trainers’ shirt watching Reynolds every move before kick-off – and will spend hours preparing him for his emotional final week playing at his junior club.
Farah said there would be plenty of icing and stretching with the plan to have the halfback complete light running on Tuesday before trying to get through the bulk of Thursday’s field session.
“He’s in no doubt for the grand final, and his groin today was no worse than it was before the game,” Farah said. “He was a bit tender in the groin at recovery, which was to be expected. He won’t run for three days. We have a nine-day turnaround.
“His issue is muscle tightness. Had it been a tendon it would have been different. But with muscles they will improve with each day.”
Farah said goal-kicking required Reynolds to kick across his body, which caused a lot of pain, while kicks in general play “your kicking leg is straighter and there is more pressure with your quad”.
Muscle tightness means Reynolds will not be able to receive any painkilling injections. There have been no recent issues with his right groin.
Reynolds spent the day on Saturday with his family checking out his new house in Brisbane, where he will live once he joins the Broncos on a three-year deal from next season.
The No.7 said after the game he had little faith in his groin with kicking goals, and Taaffe was more than a suitable back-up.
“I did a bit of work with Taaffe during the week and he was hitting them well so we had a lot of confidence in him taking the kicks,” Reynolds said.
Farah said there were no other injury concerns for the Rabbitohs, and admired Benji Marshall’s ability to take care of his body, even at the age of 36. The pair have a long history together, having got to know each other through their association with Robbie at the Tigers.
Souths enjoyed their recovery at Kurrawa Beach Surf Club with little fanfare as they attempt to clinch their first title since 2014, and Bennett’s first since 2010 when he was with St George Illawarra.
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