Reynolds, an esteemed player in his own right, confirmed he would be playing for the Broncos in the high-stakes Friday night game against Parramatta at the Gabba. His confirmation, however, came alongside a clear response to South Sydney coach Jason Demetriou‘s laudatory comments about Ilias during last week’s post-match analysis.
Over his tenure, Reynolds has played a pivotal role at South Sydney, leading them to the 2014 premiership win, in addition to seven preliminary determiners. Despite his hefty contribution to the club, he found himself sidelined before eventually joining the Brisbane Broncos.
Upon reading Demetriou’s comment in News Corp papers, the 33-year-old player countered, “That was a little potshot. I know he’s just sticking up for the halfback he’s got now and trying to give him a bit of confidence.”
Reynolds further added, “Whether he means it or not, I’m not too sure. One of the best coaches in the game, Wayne Bennett, told me if you start listening to the fans, you’ll end up sitting with them. I’m not sure whether he’s been influenced by noise from the fans”.
The seasoned player believes Demetriou is simply trying to build up his present halfback. “He’s sticking up for his halfback. I admire Lachie as a player; he’s young and still learning his trade. I’ve always said it’s unfair to compare Lachie to what I did – it was a different era and a different team,” he elucidated.
Reynolds scorned at the criticism by saying, “I’m not too worried about his opinion. It’s his opinion. I’m sure others might see it differently. All I know is I’m excited about where my journey is going with the Broncos.”
Reynolds had made a striking comeback against Souths a few weeks back, after having been out of play last week due to a groin injury, recovering from which made his contribution noteworthy in the game against North Queensland.
Reynolds, having sustained an injury to the same groin that had affected his performance in the 2021 preliminary final and Grand Final for Souths, is ready to confront Parramatta again. His eagerness for the game is evident as he is expected to resume his goal-kicking duties.
Reynolds explained his last week’s predicament, “I felt a little pull in the groin area when warming up at training last week, it was sore at the time, I finished the session, but once we flew to Townsville, I tried to sprint but couldn’t without any pain.”
Though there was an initial suggestion of dropping out from this game and rest during the bye next week, Reynolds had other ideas. “We’re heading in the right direction, and we get another chance to work on combinations and what’s been working well for us the past few weeks.”
Playing at the Gabba is a unique experience according to Reynolds. Parramatta’s Mitchell Moses, he pointed out, would have difficulties navigating the kicking and dimension challenges, especially when identifying the sideline for long kicks.
As the league stands, Brisbane and Penrith are four points ahead; the upcoming games against Raiders in Canberra and Storm at Suncorp Stadium are eagerly awaited by fans before the onset of the finals.