Forgotten Parramatta Eels flanker Eric Grothe Jr could be presented with the ideal opportunity to re-invent himself and soar back into the top-grade under new Eels clipboard man Daniel Anderson. Grothe confirmed it was time to start afresh for 2009 after getting through a disappointing year under previous coach Michael Hagan.
There is no questioning the ability of Grothe Jnr, an experienced campaigner with explosive ability that saw him make NSW Origin; Grothe was keen to chat with Anderson on Monday to show his desire to get back into the frame for first grade after spending time with feeder club Wentworthville Magpies for a big part of 08.
Grothe plans to put it all back together under Anderson (the pair having a good understanding of each other from earlier years together at the club). Consistent defensive problems have plauged Grothe in recent times, ultimately costing him his flank spot in the top grade at the Eels in 08.
Grothe believes he is fully committed, not usually a noted trainer – while it’s early days in the pre-season for next year, Grothe has turned up positive and with a fresh outlook now that Anderson is the man to lead the Eels for next year.
“I will go and see Anderson on Monday. We had this week off and, to be honest, I had no idea about his appointment. I was only told yesterday but I will go in and see him on Monday.”
It’s a busy time not just for Eric but the Grothe family, as father Eric Snr commences proceedings for a rival challenge at the Parramatta board in the weeks ahead.
At peak form, there is no question that Grothe Jnr is one of the most damaging wingers in the NRL. Blessed with the ability to run over opposing players, or pull off a big hit – Grothe Jnr has blinding speed to burn which gives him a massive advantage. With defence issues sorted and some luck with injuries, there is nothing to stop Grothe from having 2 highly successful years.
Grothe believes his defence troubles can be repaired.
“It all has to be there mentally, first of all. To be honest, I didn’t have a great year with training and attitude. I had a fair fews things I needed to fix up but they are all fixable. I have turned over a new leaf now and I am pretty excited to see what happens. We are four or five months out from playing but I am putting a lot in.”
Some corners suggested that the Roosters were seeking out Grothe Jnr to return to Bondi, as they have lost impressive wingman Amos Roberts for 09, who is Super League bound.
Grothe denied the Sydney club even approached him, but given his connections at Parramatta and the appointment of Anderson – it seems that Grothe now has the chance to once again fly high.