Robinson hails Morris' 'special' Roosters debut
Trent Robinson hailed Brett Morris' "special" debut as the winger's hat-trick laid the foundations for Sydney Roosters' 20-8 World Club Challenge beating of Wigan Warriors.
Morris, who joined from Canterbury Bulldogs for the 2019 season, crossed twice inside 10 minutes and had a third before the break in a fine first-half showing on Sunday.
The 32-year-old, who also scored twice against Wigan in the 2011 instalment of the Club Challenge, picked up a second Man of the Match award in the annual fixture that sees the champions of Super League and NRL go head-to-head.
And Roosters head coach Robinson said it is reward for the hard work Morris has put in off the pitch.
"Yeah, it was [a] very special [performance]," he told Sky Sports after the Roosters equalled the Warriors' record of four wins in the Club Challenge.
"The stuff he did at the start of that game gave us the lead, that buffer, that allowed us to hold on.
"It's his second Man of the Match, not bad for two different clubs. At his age, to be one of the first ones in at the start of November [is impressive] and pays rewards at the end of February."
Wigan had kept themselves alive in the first half through Tom Davies' try and Liam Marshall's fine effort 15 minutes from the end gave the Warriors hope before Daniel Tupou put paid to their chances.
"You could see there was a lot of pressure applied to us in second half," Robinson added. "The boys stood tall, scrapped and found a way to get out of it. I thought it was a great game."
Wigan coach Adrian Lam recognised his side's second-half improvement but believes the Warriors – who have won one and lost one in Super League this season – must start games better.
"It was a better in the second half, there were just couple of soft tries at the start of the match," he said.
"We've done that three times now, against teams like that it's just not good enough. I knew if we had enough or fair share of the ball we could build pressure and score points."