The coach swap has revitalised the Rabbitohs. Image: Phil Hillyard
The coach swap has revitalised the Rabbitohs. Image: Phil Hillyard

‘Brutal’ barb inspires Rabbitohs’ revolution

A "BRUTAL" assessment from Wayne Bennett's right-hand man has shaken up South Sydney's attack in season 2019.

Adam Reynolds has revealed new assistant coach Jason Demetriou spent the pre-season overhauling the Rabbitohs' style, doing away with their rigid structure.

"His take on our season and where we went wrong towards the back end, he was spot on with everything he's said. He's brutally honest with how things went and we'll look to change that this year," Reynolds said.

The halfback also said his side's predictability under former coach Anthony Seibold was one reason the Bunnies lost five of their final seven matches - including their preliminary final against the Sydney Roosters.

"Teams read our game plan and figured out ways to stop it. There were times where we didn't have a plan B," he said.

The Redfern side will get the opportunity to put Demetriou's changes into action against the premiers on Friday night.

Centre Braidon Burns said the gameplan was designed to promote "eyes-up footy" and do away with rigid structures in favour of a spine-driven instinctive style.

Brayden Burns will make his debut under Wayne Bennett. Image: Jonathan Ng
Brayden Burns will make his debut under Wayne Bennett. Image: Jonathan Ng

Reynolds has been given a licence to demand the ball on the right side of the field after relying heavily on the left, led by five-eighth Cody Walker, last season.

Another big shift in the style of play will place a greater onus on hooker Damien Cook and Walker to take on more of the game management.

 

Walker, in particular, has been tasked with the job of relieving Reynolds of some of the kicking pressure from his game.

"I've got a role to roam wherever I feel comfortable but also give the boys on the right a chance to have the ball," Walker said.

"That's something we have been working on all preseason so that probably see a different game this weekend. I also want to try help him out him in that area [kicking] because that's an area for me to improve."

Reynolds is aiming to exploit his new freedom. Image: Brett Costello
Reynolds is aiming to exploit his new freedom. Image: Brett Costello

For Reynolds, Walker's new role is a welcome respite and he hoped it would remove the target that opposition defences had put on his back.

"I've been begging him to kick for years," Reynolds said with a laugh.

"It means me getting smashed less after kicking the ball. I'm happy for him to get smashed after he kicks it. He probably looked in the mirror and saw he has two legs there and that he can kick off one of them."

News Corp Australia

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