Maguire happy with Keary-Reynolds combo

Michael Maguire has confirmed Luke Keary and Adam Reynolds will almost certainly be South Sydney’s halves pairing for the season opener against the Sydney Roosters on March 6.

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The duo started against Canterbury in Sunday’s NRL 28-20 trial victory at the Belmore Sports Ground with Keary playing the full 80 minutes of a match that was played in four quarters.

Keary, 22, made 10 appearances last year, nine of them off the bench, with his one start alongside Reynolds resulting in a 26-8 defeat to Melbourne in round 22.

However, Maguire believes the two can form a partnership that can prosper in 2014 as the Rabbitohs look to win a first premiership since 1971.

“I think young Luke and Adam did well together, they had some good combinations and controlled the game well in the first half,” Maguire said.

“I think the hard work they have put in over pre-season was shown today and hopefully they will become better and better, but I was really pleased with how they went.”

Maguire believes blooding Keary at the back end of last season will benefit him this year.

“When Luke played with Reyno last year they did well and I made the decision in pre-season to go with him,” he said.

“But I will go back and review the game and see where they can improve.”

Maguire’s decision will force John Sutton to lock, but he denies it is a big risk to make changes given how successful his partnership has been with Reynolds since the halfback made his debut in 2012.

“Sutto has spent plenty of time in pre-season playing through the middle but we can also move his back to the halves if we need to, with his experience,” he said.

“But I am looking forward to the different options it gives us.”

Souths will welcome back the Burgess brothers on Tuesday morning with the siblings returning from the UK on Monday evening following a family bereavement.

Maguire refused to add to speculation about Sam Burgess making the move to English rugby despite signing a four-year deal with the club last year.

He also denied the reports have been a distraction to his squad.

“I don’t have any further to add about it,” he said.

“All the focus has been about what we do on the field.”

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