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Raiders captain Jarrod Croker has spent the last nine months avoiding a replay of the 2019 grand final.

He'll probably spend at least the next decade doing the same, too.

"I've seen it walking past at the pub and there's a replay of it, but don't really stick my eyes on it to be honest," Croker says.

"You ask blokes who lost one 30 years ago - they're not over it. I'll never get over it. I'd just love to win one."

The heart and soul of the Green Machine for a decade, there was no more shattered player in the dressing room on the night a boyhood dream was cut agonisingly short at the hands of the Roosters.

What about reviewing the Roosters as preparation for Thursday night, will the grand final highlights get a run?

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"I don't think so," Croker said. There'll be enough hype around the media of a grand final rematch, but I won't be using it [as motivation].

"I have my moments every now and then [when I think about it]. I'm a pretty laid back sort of bloke.

"It's a whole roller coaster as this game is so you've got to enjoy the good times and in the tough times hang together and that's what we'll be doing."

You ask blokes who lost one 30 years ago - they're not over it. I'll never get over it

Raiders co-captain Jarrod Croker

The only downer leading into the grand final rematch is fans are set to be robbed most of a genuine one, even after having to wait an extra two months because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Of the 34 players who took the field on October 6, up to 15 could either be unavailable through injury, retirement or have moved on to another club.

News of Josh Hodgson (knee) and Bailey Simonsson's season-ending injuries compounded a growing list for the Raiders on the weekend, which already included John Bateman, Sia Soliola and Emre Guler out long-term.

Combined, the squad will give up over 840 NRL and Super League games worth of experience compared to the ANZ Stadium decider. 

The Roosters have their own injuries too with grand final members Victor Radley, Sam Verrills, Daniel Tupou and Brett Morris among those sidelined.

Co-captains Boyd Cordner and Jake Friend have also been casualties in recent weeks with head knocks.

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"They've done it for a long time now - a bit like Melbourne - they continue to produce and play good footy regardless of who's there and that's what we're going to have to do next week," Croker said of Trent Robinson's team.

"They've had the same, but they keep on producing, the Roosters. With injuries and new personnel in the team, we're probably going to concentrate more on us and what we can do.

"We're backs against the wall and short turn around, drive up to Sydney on Thursday and get stuck into them."

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