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Crichton buoyed on by Ciraldo's long days at Bulldogs

Darren England/AAP PHOTOS

Prized Canterbury recruit Stephen Crichton has backed coach Cameron Ciraldo's hard-edged approach to training, questioning how players can expect to win without long days and hard work.

Crichton will join the Bulldogs next season on a four-year deal, after he attempts to win a third premiership alongside his junior teammates at Penrith in the next fortnight.

One of the most dangerous attacking weapons in the competition, Crichton admitted he had spent the past two weeks reflecting on his time at the Panthers ahead of Friday night's preliminary final against Melbourne.

But the star centre insists he has no regrets about the impending move, despite going from the most dominant team in the NRL to a club that has not played in the finals since 2016.

Crichton is also across suggestions of player discontent at Belmore, which were sparked by a player taking leave after being made to wrested a large number of teammates after being late to training.

Reports have also centred around some players being unhappy over the gruelling nature of Ciraldo's training sessions and the length of days, something the Bulldogs coach is unapologetic about.

Crichton knows Ciraldo well, having had him as an assistant at Penrith before the coach took the top job at Canterbury after last year's grand final.

"Without hard work, it's like, you're not going to succeed," Crichton said.

"Ciro has been here and was at the start of the rebuilding and he's seen what hard work can do.

"And we've done it ever since the start, and it's worked.

"So I don't know, if you're not doing hard work, how you expect to win?"

Crichton admitted he was almost happy players believed they were being pushed too hard at the Dogs.

"If you're trying to get the easy out of training, you're just not there for the right reason," Crichton said.

"You're there for the money.

"The passion is not there. The passion as an NRL player, you want to win. That's what drives you to be the best person you can.

"That's what I learned at Penrith. Everything comes from winning. You've got to win to be your best.

"All of that comes from the way you train, the way you do everything."

Crichton said he wanted to lead by example on his arrival at Canterbury next season.

"But it kind of comes down to the attitude of the individual player, if they want to do it or not," he added.

"But it will help me definitely being a part of this club and what type of leader I've turned myself into, being around these type of boys.

"There's no regrets, I have to take it head on and do what I have to do when I get there."