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Roosters skipper Simaima Taufa

There has been a few big wins but a couple of bruising losses for Simaima Taufa over the past 12 months.

There was the triumphant NSW Origin come-from-behind win at North Sydney Oval in June. Then there was being crowned the NSWRL Women's Origin Player of the Year at the Brad Fittler Medal awards night in September.

But standing alongside that are two losses which still sting. There was losing the Harvey Norman NSW Premiership grand final with Mounties four weeks ago against Newcastle.  

And then there's the one a little further back – the inaugural NRLW grand final in September 2018 when the Roosters fell to the Broncos 34-12.

"No doubt we can win it this year," Taufa told on the eve of the 2019 opening round against the Warriors at AAMI Park on Saturday.

"With the backing of a fine Roosters club, the players we have coming in, I feel like we've got the team to win this year.

"It's a different type of feeling to last year. We were keen and eager last year but this time around the girls have been really ripping in at training and asking the questions.

Roosters v Warriors: NRLW Round 1

"The drive and enthusiasm is right there. I think the hurt we felt after losing the grand final is still fresh to us. That's like an added fuel to our fire.

"There'll be no questions about our desire. We don't want to let ourselves down or our coaching staff down, our club, our fans and our families.

"We've got one job – to go out there and play some exciting and effective football by trusting the processes the coaches have put in place for us."

Taufa said no matter what the jersey she pulled on – NSW City, Origin, Mounties, Roosters, Jillaroos – she felt like she owed it to her team and family to win.

"For me I never want to let them down. I have this will to succeed and that's probably come from the lessons I've learned from a loss.

"I take great pride in representing the Roosters, equally with my other jerseys.

"And most of my teammates have made huge sacrifices to get a contract and then keep their place in the NRLW. So we know what we've had to do to get here.

"We want to shed some light on all that so it shows the next generations of female players that it's not easy but there are great rewards now. We hope that the pathways for them will be a bit easier than what we've been through," Taufa said.

"And with the NRL behind us, we're role models for not only young girls but young boys as well."

Roosters players in a huddle after losing 2018 NRLW grand final
Roosters players in a huddle after losing 2018 NRLW grand final ©Grant Trouville /NRL Photos

So no surprise that the Roosters skipper is keen to get the second NRLW season underway.

The Warriors pack is impressive but Taufa, who is in the thick of things in the middle playing lock, has seen Roosters and NSW Origin prop Vanessa Foliaki line up the hits at training.

"Someone asked me who I thought would hit harder – Foliaki or [Boyd] Cordner," Taufa said.

"I'm thinking Boyd is pretty fast on his feet and gets up a bit more momentum, but Vanessa is an immovable object on the field.

"The good thing is these questions are even being asked! For me they both hit hard and both are great leaders."

A tell-tale hint in Foliaki's effectiveness in the ruck is that her nickname is "Wolf".

Acknowledgement of Country

National 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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