Former Raider Hodgson appears to ship message to critics

Josh Hodgson will play towards his previous NRL membership for the primary time when Parramatta tackle Canberra. (Jono Searle/AAP PHOTOS)

By Alex Mitchell in Canberra

JOSH Hodgson will hope a visit to his former dwelling of Canberra can encourage his greatest type as he continues to adapt to life at Parramatta.

The 138-game former Raiders captain will head to GIO Stadium for the primary time as an opposition participant, having struggled early in his tenure on the Eels.

Hogdson isn’t simply discovering his ft at a brand new membership but additionally getting match health after an ACL tear noticed him sit out his ultimate season within the capital.

The hooker has seemed a far cry from the participant that led the Raiders to the 2019 grand ultimate and bought them inside six factors of their first premiership since 1994.

He stays a revered determine on the membership and Canberra coach Ricky Stuart discovered it becoming Hodson would return on the membership’s Perpetually Inexperienced match, which celebrates the contributions by all former Raiders gamers.

“It’s a terrific coincidence it’s previous boys spherical, he’s been a beautiful asset to this membership ever since he signed right here,” he mentioned.

“He’s captained the membership, he bought to in all probability the peak of his profession taking part in at this membership with regard to profile and expertise.

“He’s had some unhealthy luck with regard to his accidents too, however he’ll all the time be remembered as a fierce, fierce competitor.”

Eels again Bailey Simonsson, additionally a former Raider, mentioned Hodgson’s management and expertise was shining by and would see him reply to criticism.

“One factor I learn about ‘Hodgo’ is that he’s a competitor. He’s a tough employee,” he mentioned.

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“I can’t converse for him, however I’m positive there’s a bit of a hearth lit in him to show individuals fallacious.

“He’s enhancing each week, and everyone knows the participant he’s and what he’s able to.”

The Eels will miss star halfback Mitch Moses, maybe opening the door for Hodgson to play extra of the steering function he was famend for as a Raider.

There’s now minimal harm points for Canberra, discovering themselves sending gamers right down to NSW Cup as an alternative of calling replacements up with perceived first-team regulars Xavier Savage and Corey Harawira-Naera plying their commerce within the seconds.

Stuart even hinted top-line winger Nick Cotric might be compelled to play Cup on his return from a hamstring harm given the type of incumbents Jordan Rapana and Albert Hopoate, the latter recalled after lacking Magic Spherical to attend a household marriage ceremony.

“That’s the signal of a robust membership, strain on the gamers beneath the highest 17,” Stuart mentioned.

“When you haven’t bought that, individuals fall into consolation zones, into just a little little bit of the realm the place I can take a shortcut and nonetheless play first grade.

“We don’t exit on a limb wanting to advertise our tradition (however) that’s in all probability a terrific instance of it … it’s not concerning the particular person and it’s concerning the crew on the finish of the day.”