Latrell Mitchell was easily the happiest Sydney Rooster to welcome the return of his little mate Luke Keary in a 24-16 win over the Wests Tigers on Friday night.
Mitchell relishes playing outside Keary in what was a fantastic comeback for the five-eighth after six weeks on the sideline with concussion.
The pair combined to send Victor Radley on his way before Keary provided NSW reject Mitchell with his own try as the Roosters turned a four-point deficit into an eight-point lead in the space of four minutes at Bankwest Stadium.
Mitchell destroyed the Tigers when he came up against then earlier this year.
And while this Friday night performance in front of 13,918 was far from perfect, opposition teams will be dreading trying to stop the Luke and Latrell Show on the left side of the field.
Roosters coach Trent Robinson was disappointed with reports Keary was the man to unlock Mitchell's best.
"I think Latrell's form has been very good, I think Latrell creates a lot for himself and he doesn't need to rely on anyone else,'' Robinson said.
"But we love having them as a combination. The guy has been playing well and he opened up the game for us with some great carries and some greta footy. He doesn't need anybody, but having great combinations is important to a team.''
Tigers No.6 Benji Marshall had plenty of superb moments, but nothing was going to stop his Bondi opposite.
There were big fears about Keary's playing future after he suffered a fourth concussion in the space of 18 months.
But he was prepared to put his body on the line when he accidentally took the first hit-up of the game.
Keary was in the box seat to wear the NSW No.6 jersey. And, had he remained fit, you have to wonder what sort of affect he could have had on Mitchell in his forgettable Origin I performance.
Regardless, Robinson will be grateful he has the two internationals for the run home to the finals as they try to defend their title.
Mitchell appeared to enjoy his try as he stood and glared at a small section of the crowd seated in the northern stand.
The Tigers dug deep and Marshall was on fire for much of the night, laying on two second-half tries as they looked headed for a third straight win.
But the Tigers had no answers for Keary and Mitchell's one-two punch midway through the second half.
The Tigers should be dreaming about packing out the western Sydney venue next Sunday when Marshall plays his 300th career game in the NRL. Anything less would be an insult to a club legend.
Tigers coach Michael Maguire said of Marshall's big milestone: "I've had a couple of weeks with 'Benj' where I was overseRead More – Source