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Roosters' right edge needs more credit: Tedesco

Roosters fullback James Tedesco says for all his team's renowned attacking spark on the left edge, it might be time to acknowledge gun right side centre Joey Manu needs a bit more early ball.

The Roosters have piled on the points through a left-side combination of Luke Keary, Boyd Cordner, Latrell Mitchell and Daniel Tupou over the dominant 2018 and 2019 seasons.

But Manu, who finished 2018 as one of the two dominant centres in the NRL along with Mitchell, has been heating up lately and exploded in the 30-6 win over Souths at the SCG on Friday night with one powerful try off a Tedesco pass and a stunning flick pass to Brett Morris to set up a Tedesco try.

Tedesco told Manu is one of the most skilful players he'd played with.

"I think everyone forgets about our right edge!" he laughed.

"Joey the last month or two has been really dynamic and creating space and he's just a freak. You give him early ball and he creates something out of nothing. BMoz as well, we all know how good of a try-scorer he is and he can create chances. The right edge needs some more credit!

"Obviously with Latrell that's a dynamic [left] edge with Luke and Boyd, they've scored a lot of points but if you give some early ball to Joey, we just have to do it more often."

Manu scores the opener on the right

Tedesco was pleased with the win but disappointed not to have gone on with it in the second half after leading 26-0 at the break.

"We had a few key players back this week and we knew how much better we could play compared to last week," he said.

"The way we came out in that first half and the way we played to our game plan, that's how we play our best footy and it was really pleasing.

"We probably just took our foot off the throat, I think we were ahead convincingly and didn't stick to what worked for us in the first half. It's a good lesson I guess. We know how we play our best footy, we just have to stick to that no matter if we're up or down."

Told of comments by coach Trent Robinson that the team should have won 50-0 rather than 30-6, Tedesco was diplomatic.

"Robbo always knows we have improvement in us no matter what the scoreline is," he said.

"I think we all felt in the second half we could have played the way we did in the first half and won by more but I guess to win how we did in week one of the finals is pretty pleasing.

"Me and Keary are still learning to control a team in that situation. Obviously Cooper [Cronk] is very experienced and he's passed on as much knowledge as he can and me and Keary are learning a lot off him."

Tedesco welcomed the week off, particularly with a number of players carrying minor injuries plus Jake Friend nearing a return from a broken arm.

"It definitely helps, we had a few little niggles so for the boys to rest and recover and have that week off is definitely pleasing," he said.

"We know how hard semi-final football is so to have this break and recoup for two weeks to get ready for the next game is definitely good for our bodies and our mental state."

Match Highlights: Roosters v Rabbitohs

Tedesco is nearing the end of what will be a second phenomenal season in a row, recently becoming the first player in history to earn the NSW player of the series award in successive years to go with his Kangaroos debut last year and his maiden finals series culminating with a grand final win. Few would bet against his second finals series panning out the same way.

"I probably haven't reflected on it too much, I'm just going with the flow," Tedesco said.

"I don't try and think about it too much what's happened in the past, I try and take it week to week but winning that award again this week was pretty special.

"I don't know if a player's done that before so to be recognised as the top player at that level is pretty special. I know I'm going to have to keep performing at that level for us to win these next two games."

Acknowledgement of Country

New South Wales Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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