Departing Melbourne Storm five-eighth Blake Green never wanted the NRL finals to be about him but he’s happy to make it all about Cooper Cronk.
Green had planned to postpone news of his off-season switch to Manly until the end of the year but with the announcement made public on the weekend he’s now hoping the spotlight moves on to his champion halves partner.
Cronk will become just the 25th player to reach the 300-game milestone when he runs out in the preliminary final against the Raiders at AAMI Park on Saturday night.
Green has played with Cronk in 48 of those game, with the pair key to the Storm’s surge to the final four.
“I’m glad the announcement is out of the way and we can focus on a big milestone this week in Cooper’s 300th game,” Green said.
“It’s a massive achievement, not just for the club but for him personally … he’s the ultimate professional.
“Hopefully we can put in a good performance so he has good memories of the night.”
Green said the decision to leave Melbourne after two seasons was tough.
“It’s not one I planned on making but with salary caps you can’t keep everyone,” he said.
He played at three Sydney NRL clubs before shifting to the UK, but has been in some of his finest form since joining the Storm at the start of the 2015 season.
Green credited Cronk with helping him resurrect his NRL career.
“I’ve learnt a heap of technical things from him but the most beneficial is probably to keep a calm head,” Green said.
“He is really calm in the high pressure situations, he’s never erratic, he always knows what to do and hopefully some of that’s rubbed off on me.”
The Storm will go into the preliminary final as favourites but the Raiders convincingly won their last clash last month.