It's been nine years since Brett Morris played in a preliminary final.
"It has indeed been a long time," Morris told NRL.com of his last grand final qualifier as a winger for the Dragons in their 13-12 win over the Wests Tigers at ANZ Stadium.
"When you're a young fella you think they're going to come around pretty often."
In five years at the Dragons (2006-2010) they did. Morris played in eight finals, including two preliminaries (2006, 2010) and the 2010 Grand Final win over the Roosters.
But it's been slim pickings since – three finals in four seasons with the Bulldogs but none past the second week.
In his first year with the Roosters, he's back deep in finals territory.
The look on brother Josh Morris' face with the Sharks crashing out in week one this year against Manly shows Brett how special a preliminary final feels once again.
"You just don't realise how hard they are to get to," he said.
"It's another opportunity – and they are rare – to make a grand final so I'm certainly going out to try to make that happen this weekend."
Morris' Roosters play the Storm at the SCG on Saturday night.
"I haven't got too much left in my career so I definitely would love to win another comp," the 33-year-old said.
"Because these matches decides who plays in the grand final, I believe there's more pressure on them than the actual grand final. Once you're there you've achieved something big.
"You don't want the preliminary final to be your last game of the year, when you know the big one is just around the corner."
Most fans remember who played in a NRL Grand Final, but very few remember the preliminary final losers.
If Morris does make the 2019 grand final he joins an elusive band of players to play deciders for more than one club.
"It's pretty cool. I obviously came into a successful side, which has very high standards. So for myself personally I just wanted to get into this team and have the guys trust me," Morris said.
"That's a big thing coming to a new club – to earn your teammates' respect and trust – and then I was filling the shoes of a favoured son in Blake Ferguson.
"You've got to do as much justice to the jersey as the person before you did. They were big shoes to fill with Fergo, seeing as he was such an instrumental player last year for the Roosters.
"I've gone out and done my best. I had that patch there with the injury (knee, missed 12 games) but I felt my performance in the qualifying final was one of my better performances for the year."
Morris wasn't among the Roosters seven try scorers in the 39-6 win over the Rabbitohs. But he ran for 130 metres, made two line breaks and had a hand in two tries.
He's also crossed seven times in 13 matches on his own, along with three try assists for his centre Joey Manu.
"He's very easy to play with. He works very hard at his game and he understands he's still learning. He's not been playing NRL all that long but made such a good fist of it already and earned a Test jersey (for Kiwis)," Morris said.
"Joey maintains such high standards to stay on top of his game and I love that about him. I try to help him wherever I can; a few little tips here and there.
"I've played outside some really good centres in my career and he's right up there."
And on Saturday Morris faces off against another top craftsman in winger Josh Addo-Carr.
"He's been one of Storm's best and does all that tough stuff coming out of his own end. And when he gets a little bit of space he causes havoc – we saw that in the opening try last weekend," Morris said.
"He's a current rep player and I literally have to be up on my toes for him as he changes direction so quickly. He's fast whichever way he slides – left or right."
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