Reynolds to Cronk up a gear
HE almost single-handedly conquered the Dragons - now his halfback nemesis awaits.
Halfback Adam Reynolds was South Sydney's hero last weekend: the man of the moment who scored all 13 points in a gripping one-point win over St George Illawarra, including three field goals.
Victory pits Reynolds on a collision course with Sydney Roosters halfback Cooper Cronk - an individual confrontation the South Sydney No.7 rarely wins.
In fact, Fox Sports Stats can reveal Reynolds has played Cronk 11 times - winning just twice. That is a low 18.2 per cent success rate.
Cronk now has a chance to further torment Reynolds in Saturday night's grand final qualifier at Allianz Stadium.
Reynolds has a 45.5 per cent winning success rate against halfback legend Johnathan Thurston and 50 per cent versus Manly star Daly Cherry-Evans.
The Rabbitohs champion has strong winning percentages against most halfbacks but Cronk remains his true adversary.
"I've got him once this year (a 30-20 round 21 win at ANZ Stadium). What's to say it can't happen again?" Reynolds said.
"He has obviously been in a great system down there in Melbourne.
"I rate him very highly. I try to model parts of my game off him; the structures, that side of things. Kicking game, he is very good in that department, he organises very well.
"He has been at the top of the game for quite some time now. He has revolutionised the way halfbacks go about their business. He's got the total package.
"I have a lot of respect for him, I think he's a great player. He is a good person off the field as well. He is a key player for them but obviously they have other threats as well."
To be fair, Souths haven't experienced much joy against Melbourne in recent seasons.
"We haven't had too much success against Melbourne in the past," Reynolds said.
"I am continually working on my game. I don't think anyone is happy where they're at otherwise you can't improve.
"But I am looking at other parts of my game where I can be more consistent throughout the 80 minutes. There is always room for improvement."
Reynolds stayed calm and composed over the frantic final few minutes against Saints - guiding his surging Rabbitohs in a preliminary final.
Not that he is still celebrating.
"It's happened now, it's done, it's gone," Reynolds said. "It's time to move on, we've got a big game against the Roosters this week and it's one we are looking forward to."
The rivalry between Souths and the Roosters dates back 110 years. They are genuine eastern suburbs foes.
"There is definitely a passion there," Reynolds said. "Throw in the bonus that it's a preliminary final and that makes it that much more special.
"We know what we need to do."
Reynolds and five-eighth Cody Walker have been ultra-impressive this season.
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