Roosters Yet To Confirm Cooper Cronk's Fitness For NRL Grand Final
D-day has arrived for Sydney Roosters halfback Cooper Cronk after being given until the last minute to prove his fitness for Sunday night's NRL grand final against his former club Melbourne.
Cronk is one step closer to pulling off a medical miracle and overcoming a severe left shoulder injury despite not taking part in the Roosters' final training session at Allianz Stadium on Saturday.
The former Test halfback has still been included in the Roosters' trimmed 19-strong squad released on Saturday night.
In the unfamiliar No.23 jersey, Cronk remains on an extended bench as a reserve but back-up halfback Sean O'Sullivan has been cut along with Nat Butcher.
The Roosters will make their final call on Cronk an hour before the season decider's 1920 (AEST) kick-off at ANZ Stadium.
Veteran utility Mitchell Aubusson is still named at halfback despite never playing in the position in his 12 season career.
However, Victor Radley or Ryan Matterson are expected to be considered as halves cover by Roosters coach Trent Robinson.
Radley is tipped to either be Cronk's bodyguard in defence or shift from lock to pivot with five-eighth Luke Keary moving to halfback if the ex-Test star succumbs to the injury.
Storm assistant Adam O'Brien - who links with the Roosters next year - said Melbourne had all contingencies covered.
"I have probably stopped worrying about it a little bit," he said.
"If you get caught up changing too much you don't execute what you have done all year.
"It's not ideal preparation (for Storm) but one they are forced to go through with.
"He's a quality player. I understand why they want to give him every chance to get up for it."
O'Brien said they had heard all the possible halves combinations and even volunteered one of his own - two game centre Paul Momirovski.
Momirovski is on the Roosters bench after sensationally filling in for suspended Latrell Mitchell in their preliminary final win.
"A few people have been tossed up. Victor Radley is one we have done a bit of homework on. Matterson has played there and there was also talk of Momirovski and Aubusson spending time there," O'Brien said.
"Your guess is as good as mine."
O'Brien said if Cronk played he would have nowhere to hide.
"At some stage he is going to have to come into contact with a big guy," he said.
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