Maloney not dwelling on unhappy Suncorp memories
Last time James Maloney played on the Suncorp Stadium turf, he missed a tackle in the 85th minute that allowed Broncos halfback Ben Hunt to burst over for a match-winning golden point try.
While Maloney clearly hasn't forgotten about it, he said there's no point dwelling on those moments and it's not about making amends.
The Cronulla-bound pivot also knows each game in red, white and blue could be his last but added that is also the last thing on his mind as he tries to help his side to a second title in three years.
With regular halves partner and club co-captain Mitch Pearce not having played since injuring a hamstring against the Broncos in Round 24, Maloney has stepped up as the senior playmaker alongside young half Jackson Hastings to guide the side to four wins from five games (including that Round 24 epic) with the one blot on their copybook coming in the first week of the finals against the Storm.
Asked about the two previous clashes between the sides this year, Maloney was quick to point out that it's "one each – they beat us up at Suncorp, I missed the tackle that lost us the game, but anyway!"
While Maloney did miss the talented Broncos playmaker on his run to the line back in Round 6, Hunt also shrugged through centre Michael Jennings, sold fullback Roger Tuivasa-Sheck a huge dummy then brushed off Mitch Pearce in what was a massive individual play.
Either way, Maloney said he's never been the type of player to dwell on those moments.
"I was disappointed obviously after that game but that's the beauty of footy, you move on, it's on again next week. I go home to my kids and footy's irrelevant," he said.
"That's footy, take your lessons from the hard times, enjoy the good times, that's just how it is."
He also said he's "not really" worried about when his Roosters career may come to an end.
"Especially now, the position we're in, last week [the loss to Melbourne] becomes sort of null and void because we're in the position we would have been anyway, we're in a prelim final.
"It's just about – it's the sort of footy it is, it's about turning up and making sure we execute next Friday night I think it is against the Broncs and that's where we need to focus all our attention now."
Maloney said the big win over the Bulldogs what a "pleasing performance" that corrected a lot of things that hadn't gone right in the loss to the Storm a week earlier.
"We'll build on it for this week; massive clash up there at Suncorp, should be a full house up there and a really big challenge."
He added the side's main focus would just getting back to what they've done throughout the year.
"We thought we probably missed the mark a little bit last week so it was just getting back to what we've done and what's got us to the minor premiership this year and to get on top there, play the sort of football that we do.
"There were some areas we could have really fixed up from the Melbourne game and I think there was improvement there [against Canterbury]. There's still stuff to work on but it was a good step."
He described the Broncos as a tough side who played well in their qualifying final win over the Cowboys in the first week of the finals.
"It's not going to be an easy task up there, it's going to be a packed Suncorp Stadium, there will be plenty of emotion in that game and plenty of atmosphere. It's something we'll have to deal with. We have to get a real focus on playing our style of football," he said.