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NRL: Souths out to target Cleary

South Sydney forward Jai Arrow says they will be looking to test Nathan Cleary’s shoulder out if the Penrith Panthers star returns to action on Friday night.

Souths are priced at 9/1 to win the 2022 grand final and will face the Panthers in a re-match of last seasons big dance which Penrith won.

Shoulder reconstruction

Cleary has not played since that grand final win after undergoing a shoulder reconstruction in the off-season but there is a chance he could play his first game against the Rabbitohs.

If that is the case then Arrow says they will have to be at their best to nullify his threat. The Souths ace said they will also test out his shoulder as they know he will be nervous.

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“He obviously had a reco in the off-season and missed the first couple of rounds so he hasn’t had some footy under his belt, so we will definitely want to test his shoulder out and test him defensively,” Arrow said.

“He is obviously a quality player, you can’t take that away from him and he will no doubt do his job, but it is hard coming back after a surgery and trying to find your groove, especially when we have had a month of footy so I have no doubts we will try to test him out.”

Expecting fireworks

Meanwhile Arrow accepts what a quality side Penrith are and says he is looking forward to a feisty re-match.

“They are a quality side right across the park and if you want to be the best, you have got to beat the best, so I am really excited for Friday night against the reigning premiers,” Cleary added. “No doubt there will be a bit of fireworks and both packs will go after each other.”

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