Moon boot won’t keep fullback out of grand final, says Ivan Cleary

Dylan Edwards, featured, League, NRL, NRL finals, NRL grand final, Rugby League

Penrith coach Ivan Cleary has brushed off concerns a foot injury will keep Dylan Edwards out of Sunday’s NRL grand final, saying a moon boot and crutches is part of the fullback’s regular routine.

A day out from the grand final, Cleary confirmed Edwards will face South Sydney at Suncorp Stadium insisting the extra precautions are because he’s been nursing the same injury for weeks.

At the start of the week Edwards was spotted in a moon boot and crutches, igniting fear the livewire No.1 was in serious doubt with a foot injury.

But before the captain’s run at Suncorp Stadium on Saturday where Edwards was expected to undergo a fitness test, Cleary did his best to allay those fears.

“I haven’t seen him to be honest but that’s good news though,” the coach told media.

“Dylan’s fine, he’ll be right. I’m sure both teams have got players carrying injuries, we certainly have, but we’ve had for some time.

“I just marvel at the resilience at these boys and the courage they show each week. They just refuse not to play and they keep showing up and doing their thing and I’m sure it’ll be the same tomorrow.

“(Edwards has) started the week on crutches and in a moon boot for the last three weeks, so that’s just to take weight off the foot.

“By the time training comes around, he whacks it on and does his thing.

“Watching him last week he’s one of our best. He’s very important to this team.”

The 25-year-old is one of the heroes of the team and his tough carries from the back and support play will be crucial against the Rabbitohs on Sunday.

A 16-10 loss to Souths in week one of the finals came without Edwards at the back as he nursed the foot injury that threatened to keep him out of Sunday’s decider.

Despite averaging 191 running metres a game this year, he remains unassuming to all but his Panthers teammates.

“He’s just one of those guys the boys love playing with, he’s extremely tough, he’s durable, he gets targeted a lot by other teams which pretty much sums up how valuable he is, they see him as a threat,” Cleary said.

“He’s one of those great teammates that our boys love.

“That’s probably the strength of our team that these boys are so close and connected and every player in the team does their job.”


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