Greg Inglis is looking for to his return to the playing paddock. Picture: Brett Costello
Greg Inglis is looking for to his return to the playing paddock. Picture: Brett Costello

Inglis return to raise Rabbitohs

HE's called it a "blessing in disguise."

Big Greg Inglis is back fit, focused and fresh.

The NRL finals series has just been put on notice - the x-factor has been cleared to return.

Inglis, 31, is expected to make his comeback after seven weeks out with a broken thumb against Canberra on Saturday afternoon at GIO Stadium.

And the Queensland legend will give South Sydney - losers in their past two outings - a timely and bullocking boost heading in the finals.

"The bigger the stage, the bigger the performance. He always produces when he needs to," Souths star Sam Burgess said. "It might take him a couple of weeks, it might take him a couple of minutes."

Inglis was still wearing a hand brace at training on Monday and will need final clearance from a specialist to take his place at centre against the Raiders but the star centre insists he is ready to go.

Inglis will give the Bunnies a serious boost. Picture: Brett Costello
Inglis will give the Bunnies a serious boost. Picture: Brett Costello

"I feel fresh in body and mind," Inglis said. "This is a blessing in disguise, that's the way I am looking at it. Look at it in a positive way, keeping the body fresh.

"It has taken time to heal, seven weeks ago today, it wasn't ideal. The one positive thing is that we're heading into the finals series and I'm a lot fresher.

"I have been walking into the sheds and seeing the boys all iced-up, it's one thing I haven't missed.

"We need to build momentum in the next two weeks leading into the finals. I want to go out there and do my job the best I can for the team. That's what we have spoken about all year.

"I feel more comfortable now than two weeks ago when I was assessed. From the medial reports from this morning, the club doctor has ticked it off. I'm just waiting for the surgeon to tick it off now."

Souths teammates were genuinely excited about Inglis' impending return.

In his 14-year NRL career, Inglis has become one of the greatest and most powerful players in rugby league's 110-year history.

Inglis will give the Bunnies plenty of spark. Photo by Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images.
Inglis will give the Bunnies plenty of spark. Photo by Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images.

"He will bring experience, he has played 250 games, Origin, Australia, a super experienced player at every single level," Burgess said.

"Greg will also bring calmness and add a bit of leadership to myself and John (Sutton), we're looking forward to getting him back. We have played some great football in his absence but certainly what he does bring is that level of x-factor."

With Alex Johnston also due back from injury this weekend, Souths are starting to look formidable.

Inglis remained in Sydney during his recuperation and spent time helping at training and with Anthony Seibold in the coaching box.

"I just chilled," Inglis said.

Asked could this Souths team win the premiership, Inglis said: "I believe so but we have to go into the finals with momentum and it starts this weekend against Canberra. They just had a big upset (against Sydney Roosters).

"The boys have done extremely well except for the last two weeks. We know we've been 'off' for the last two weeks."

Inglis is under contract at Redfern until the end of 2020 but hasn't ruled out having one final season in 2021.

"We'll see how we go after 2020. If I feel like I can play for one more, I can only ask the question,' Inglis said.

"As a footballer, you love the game so much but you also don't want to go that one year too long. I will see how the body is and have a chat with the club then."



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