Chris Sandow’s shoulder charges used to give former South Sydney coach John Lang sleepless nights, but Parramatta have cleared the newly arrived halfback to continue smashing players twice his size.
Parramatta Eels coach Stephen Kearney said the high-risk shoulder charge could at times inspire his teammates, and star fullback Jarryd Hayne quipped he would try to help Sandow fine-tune the shoulder that has featured on many NRL highlights reels.
“Sometimes it’s not so much about pulling it off, but it’s the reaction he gets from his teammates,” Kearney said
“The bloke is knee-high to a grasshopper, but he’s trying to inspire.
“I’ve got no dramas with doing it, but given it’s the right time and place.
“When he’s trying to do it to front-rowers, that’s the competitive nature in him. He doesn’t want to get run over the top of or beaten, and that’s his way of doing it.”
Sandow was concussed during Saturday’s trial against Wests Tigers, but not from an attempted shoulder charge.
Sandow has been cleared to play in Friday’s final hitout at Penrith…alongside Hayne and Nathan Hindmarsh.
Sandow says he cannot flick his shoulder charge from his playbook.
“Sometimes you know when to do it and when not do it,” he said.
“I just try to spark the boys up, that’s my job in the team.”
Hayne went one further on Monday, and offered to give Sandow some pointers as they joked around after a game of lawn bowls.
“I’m laughing every time he does it, it looks funny,” Hayne said as Sandow walked past.
“He tried to do it to Matt Utai on Saturday but got his hip.”
by Buford Balony