Rugby League

World Club Series 2016: Sydney Roosters rookie Joe Burgess ready for hostile reception

Sydney Roosters winger Joe Burgess is unsure of the reception he'll receive from St Helens fans on Friday night after being cautioned for inciting the locals during an appearance at Langtree Park in June.

Burgess, 21, makes his 13-a-side Roosters debut not far from former club Wigan as the World Club Series kicks off with a replay of the first-ever such clash in 1976.

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Last year, Burgess earned the ire of the Merseyside crowd during a 30-14 defeat by lobbing the ball into the terraces after a long-range try and was warned about inciting spectators.

"I ran the length of the field, scored, and threw the ball into the crowd ," he said at the match venue as the Roosters mingled with local children at a community function.

"I might get a better reception this week because I'm in Roosters colours - but I might not": Burgess.
"I might get a better reception this week because I'm in Roosters colours - but I might not": Burgess. Photo: Getty Images

"By the end of the game, we were down, and I got quite a bit of stick. 'Burgess, Burgess, what's the score?' I was getting it for all of the game."I threw the ball and the ref said 'don't get 'em started'.

"I might get a better reception this week because I'm in Roosters colours - but I might not!"

Without 2015 heroes Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, Mitchell Pearce, Michael Jennings, Jared Waerea-Hargreaves and Boyd Cordner, the Roosters have plenty to prove as they take to the field in front of an anticipated 15,500 capacity crowd.

The end of their summer of discontent can't come soon enough.

After the Wednesday visit to Langtree Park - where the Challenge Cup, Super League Trophy and WCC Shield were on display from the morning until early afternoon, the tricolours held an opposed session against Warrington at that town's new Victoria Park sports complex.

Sam Moa continued his RoostersTV takeover in Dubai, speaking to Captain Jake Friend, Jared Waerea-Hargreaves and Omar Slaimankhel #Represent

Posted by The Official Sydney Roosters Page on Tuesday, 16 February 2016

The session cost £5 ($10) admission to anyone who was not a member of either the Roosters or the Wolves.

New hooker Ian Henderson said he was excited to see halves Jackson Hastings, 20, and Jayden Nikorima, 19, in action.

"Obviously when you lose a couple of big games, other people need to step up," the former Catalans Dragon said.

"The good thing is that we've got a deep squad and we're confident that anyone who goes into those positions will do a good job.

"I can understand where (critics) are coming from but we've got that confidence.

"Jackson Hastings, in particular, has been vocal getting the team around and Jayden Nikorima's got a lot, a lot of skill. If he can play off the back of Jackson that's going to be really exciting.

"We've still got a structure and a way that we play. That's not going to change because the players are different."

The World Club Series continues on Saturday night, local time, when Wigan host Brisbane at DW Stadium.

On Sunday, Leeds play North Queensland at Headingley in the World Club Challenge.

Cowboys captain Johnathan Thurston was due on Thursday night to be presented with the Golden Boot as the world's best player during a ceremony in Leeds.

Wayne Bennett was also due to front the media as England coach for the first time on Thursday.

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