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Reynolds was keen on Brooks NRL clash

South Sydney halfback Adam Reynolds believes the NRL has missed a trick by not clearing the way for Wests Tigers youngster Luke Brooks to play in Friday's night's clash between the two sides.
Reynolds was keen on Brooks NRL clash
by AAP

By Steve Jancetic

SYDNEY, August 27 AAP - South Sydney halfback Adam Reynolds believes the NRL has missed a trick by not clearing the way for Wests Tigers youngster Luke Brooks to play in Friday's night's clash between the two sides.

Brooks completed a marvellous debut with a man-of-the-match performance against St George Illawarra on Saturday, the 18-year-old halfback only given permission to play by the NRL because both the Tigers and Dragons were out of finals contention.

The Tigers had already exhausted their second-tier salary cap and essentially were allowed to break the rules by giving Brooks a taste of the top grade but, with the Rabbitohs and next week's opponents North Queensland both in the top eight, the rug has been pulled from under his brief NRL career.

Reynolds believes the inclusion of Brooks would have only added to Friday night's match, which now shapes as something of a mismatch with the Tigers clearly struggling without the direction of a genuine halfback.

Asked if the NRL should be taking advantage of situations like Brooks' debut performance, Reynolds said: "I think so. I think it's disappointing when young players have to miss out because of the salary cap.

"It's disappointing for the game - he was unreal last week. It's disappointing for the fans; he's a great young player.

"He's a breathe of fresh air, he did well for them last week. It would be good for him to play."

It wasn't so long ago that Reynolds himself was handed a much-lauded start, when he took over the Souths No.7 jumper from the departed Chris Sandow at the start of the 2012 season.

He is now widely considered the favourite to inherit the NSW No.7 next year from Mitchell Pearce, but so promising was Brooks' first-up display that many believe it won't be too long until the Tigers rookie will be pushing Reynolds for representative honours.

"... I'm sure he's going to have a big future in the NRL so there'll be plenty of time for that down the track," Reynolds said of personal match-ups with Brooks.

"They've got a lot to look forward to next year with him. He's shown on the weekend what he's capable of."


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