Aubusson uncomfortable with NRL spotlight

Sydney Roosters legend Mitch Aubusson is set to become the most-capped player in the NRL club's history on Saturday night.

MITCHELL AUBUSSON of the Roosters runs the ball during the NRL match between the Sydney Roosters and the Brisbane Broncos at AS in Sydney, Australia.
MITCHELL AUBUSSON of the Roosters runs the ball during the NRL match between the Sydney Roosters and the Brisbane Broncos at AS in Sydney, Australia. Picture: Mark Kolbe/Getty Images

Mitch Aubusson can't wait until this week is over when he overtakes Anthony Minichiello as the most-capped player for the Sydney Roosters across 112 years.

But it's not because it's a milestone he's been chasing - he's simply not used to the attention.

Already this year the 30-year-old has announced his retirement at the end of the season and played his 300th NRL game.

And now, as he prepares to play his 303rd game for the famous foundation club when they face Cronulla on Saturday, he's proud and humbled but ready to move on with his job.

"It's been a really interesting few weeks for me personally," he said.

"I'm looking forward to it being over if I'm really honest but that's just the way I am.

"I just look back to there's a game of footy to be played this weekend and there's two points up for grabs against a really good Sharks team and that's how I'll take it."

But after spending almost half of his life at the Roosters since joining as a teenager from Ballina, there's no way his latest milestone would go without celebration.

The man he is surpassing reached out this year urging him to chase down the 302-game record, which Minichiello achieved in the 2014 preliminary final.

Minichiello led the Roosters to the 2013 premiership as captain, the first of three premierships for Aubusson.

"That was big from him," Aubusson said.

"He was my captain for a long time... a great leader of men and I'm really proud to say I played underneath him and played a part in his journey and was there for all those milestones when he hit them.

"I'm proud that we're still mates today."

Co-captain Jake Friend has grown up alongside Aubusson as one-club men at the Roosters, forming an unbreakable bond as teammates.

More than 13 years later he still considers Aubusson a confidant and moral compass, someone to look to for advice and an example of professionalism.

"He really hasn't changed," Friend said.

"He's just always stuck to his morals and who he is and what he does and the way he prepares and trains and lives.

"That really hasn't wavered since he was a young kid coming into grade.

"That's what a lot of people admire about him at this club.

"He's very staunch in his beliefs and he goes about his business without looking for praise.

"He's just done the job for the Roosters time and time again and hasn't really asked for anything in return."

Except, that is, for the spotlight to move on next week.