Bennett tough love gets Su'A to decider

·2-min read

It was the news he didn't want to hear but South Sydney forward Jaydn Su'A admits Wayne Bennett's tough love was crucial to getting him ready for an NRL grand final.

Su'A has always had a No.1 supporter in Bennett.

As an 18-year-old, it was Bennett who gave him his NRL debut at Brisbane.

When Su'A was on the the outer at the Broncos in 2019, it was Bennett who threw him a career lifeline and brought him to the Rabbitohs on a two-year deal.

Bennett's support isn't unconditional however, evidenced when Su'A was sent back to reserve grade by the veteran coach after Souths' 56-12 loss to Penrith in May.

Having regained his place. Su'A has been a vital part of Souths' charge to Sunday's premiership decider against Penrith.

"Obviously, it hurt when I did get dropped. Lucky he did it though, I'm sitting here now about to play a grand final," Su'A told AAP.

"Thankfully it was then instead of now.

"It is important. It's good to be on your toes and just to be ready.

"I was able to turn my season around and play better these last few weeks and go now into a grand final. How good?"

Sunday's game will be the last in the professional relationship between Bennett and Su'A.

The 71-year-old coach is returning to Brisbane with his future still undetermined while Su'A has agreed to join St George Illawarra on a three-year deal from 2022 onward.

Going their separate ways as premiership winners has a nice ring to it from Su'A's point of view.

"He's tough on me but it helps me get to where I need to get to," he said.

"I've had it since I was 18 years old and there's no better guy that I would rather have than the man himself to look after me and to coach me.

"He does mean a lot to me and I'm very grateful for everything he's done for me.

"He brought me over from Brisbane as well and gave me another chance to turn my career around and helped me achieve things I never thought I'd be able to achieve.

"I'm sad it's coming to an end and we're all just going to go out there and try and get a win for him."

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