Most impressive and disappointing: Round 15 v Roosters

It is amazing what a week in rugby league does, a win and pain goes away. From blueprints being drawn up to tear down CommBank stadium last week to all quiet on the western front this week and further onwards til Souths next Saturday night.

The stats pretty much mimicked a 10 point win, 54% possession, 85% completions. However some weird stats, we won offloads 20-12, but 46 missed tackles to their 31, that is an odd one. Also they had 46 tackle breaks to our 31 (Weird to have same number for two stats LOL). Roosters 9 errors is what cost them massively, pushing momentum back into our favour. It was a good win and performance though the 46 missed tackles looking back is not great.

Most Impressive:

Reagan Campbell-Gillard: My man of the match. I love big Reg and his porno mo, RCG was our best forward and hell maybe the best forward out there. Had big minutes and had over 215 metres off 20 runs so 10.5 metres per run roughly. 24 tackles also sured up the middle. Very unlucky to miss out on Game II spot with Jordan McLean (mr. appeared in a winning team) getting in.

Junior Paulo: A nice game for Junz, one his best in a while frankly. Junz simply just ran up the middle, did not worry about setting up 2nd phase or a block play, simply used his body to make metres up the middle. That works against a team like Sydney City. 229 metres off 25 runs, 4 tackle breaks and 27 tackles capped off a good night for the co-captain.

Maika Sivo: Wouldn't say it was one his best or the best we've seen from an Eels winger, but better than what Maika used to dish up in 2021, even 2020 for that matter. He looked confident, energetic and out to prove a point. 8 tackle breaks, 162 metres and a try is the Maika of old, give Walker a palm in his chest that will warrant a bruise and a few nights of nightmares.

Shaun Lane: First time he has appeared here all year, two try assists for the big girafffe. People on socials were absolutely abusing Lane and saying he should be dropped. Now i have made known players i do not like or not overly fond of in our 17, yet Lane i do like, granted has some poor games and games where i've made not he was not good, but never once thought of getting him out of the 17. Tonight showed Lane's value on the edge. 155 metres (considering he is only averaging 107 metres all year) and 25 tackles in 80 mins with 2 try assists capped off a very nice game.

Waqa Blake: Screw it, i love Waqa at centre and have no issue with him at centre, there i said it. Or should i say i like Waqa in the 17 in general. Nice game from Waqa, nice hard running, 150 metres and 4 tackle breaks. Even a nice moment when Sivo made his run in the first half, the crowd cheered "SIVO" and you see Blake look over at Maika with mouth open screaming "Let's go!!!!". Made them pumped.

 

Honorable mentions: Gutherson, Moses, Kaufusi and Matterson.

 

Most Disappointing:

Isaiah Papali'i: Moving back to the edge worked better, despite me saying he should be a middle i was wrong. But one thing i will say is that try was good but overall big underwhelming. Yes he went off for HIA with 15 to go, but Papa only had 77 metres off 9 runs, a few metres off that try he scored. 26 tackles but a team high 5 missed (Mahoney being the other). Not great, it was not a bad game from Papa but those stats are a bit disappointing.

Reed Mahoney decision making: Reed was a lot better today in involvement, always around the ruck looking for an offload. His defence is always the same in that he puts his body on the line. But there was a play late in the second half, on the last, where Moses called for it and Reed took it to the blind looking for Sivo and play went for nothing. Coming to a point where you are looking to ice a game out, if your Halfback calls the ball you give it to them. I went to the game with my best mate, a Wests fan, and he was saying Mahoney doesn't sit right with him called him a snake. Saying he is an issue in our squad. Now he is not an issue to the point of losing games, but i see what it means. It could be good for us to move to someone like Hodgson who i feared initially would clash with Moses, but by signing practically a one-year deal with the second in the hands of the club, shows Hodgson will do what it takes to finish with a title with a good team, that means playing along side Moses. Reed may have a big head and thinks highly of himself and if that is the case so be it, but the club seemed to have showed how important he is to them and well there might be more behind the scenes then we thought. Always rumours of him running in with BA and even Joey when he was here. You would never know but why him out of all the personalitiies here unless true.

Forward Passes: It was an overall OK game in terms of refereeing, but that Tupouniua forward pass was a bad miss. Now i will play both sides and say no matter if that pass was an inch or two forward or back he was making that break, but rules are rules at the same time. 

Ky Rodwell limited minutes: Always love seeing a debutant or a player with only 2-3 games under their belt get games as it is like a new toy, seeing if they are up to the standard and if they will be good or not. Now Rodwell, 1 NRL game, i wanted to see how he would go considering our bench has been very hit or miss this year. Only got 3 minutes so get not get a gauge at all, he looked keen and even dropped the ball trying to get up to play it which is not good, at least he got on and made his 1 game into 2, not a one game wonder. I think Rodwell will have more than 2 games by the end of 2022, and i think when his contract is up by 2024 he will have over 50 games to his belt, he has a bright future and is a BA player, but wish there was a chance for him to get more minutes, understood why he did not get on earlier but still. If you do not trust them with 10 to go and up by 10, do not name them at all. That is my philosophy, Nathan Brown you would happily put on with 10 to go, name him.

 

And that is it, let's see if this a changing of attitude and mental capacity, or a flash in the pan. Having a week off could be bad for us as going into Souths 7 days after that performance allows us to get continue that momentum, where now we have sort of stop and start again. On another hand it sort of also presents a good test for us to see if we can switch off and switch back on, which is what we will have to do in semi's at times. Souths who are smarting, then Wests at Leichhardt and Warriors at home, the latter two should be easy wins, SHOULD BE is the word that is dangerous for us, so this last 10-12 weeks of the season is crucial more so for BA, can he get us primed in a top 4-6 spot, get us to week 2 then improve to week 3? Anything but a prelim will throw wood and gasoline to the fire brought up by the media last year saying we cannot get past week 2.

In terms of team changes for Round 16, well same 17 unless BA wants Brown back on the bench for Rodwell, i personally think persevere with Rodwell for another week at least. It also depends on how our rep players come out of the week, RCG and Matto can now rest up with no Origin; Paulo for NSW, Penisini maybe for Tonga, Brown, Niukore and Papali'i for NZ, Makatoa for Cook Islands, Sivo i believe for Fiji same with Blake. It is wonderful to see all these players represent international football and hope they come away uninjured.

Enjoy rep round, now i know how soccer fans in England feel during International break as i would much rather watch at least NSW cup, but is what it is, Origin on Sunday is the saving grace at least.

 

And that is it

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  • My favourite Maika Sivo moment was with about 2 or 3 minutes to go, the Roosters broke down their right edge and Sivo chased back from marker and recovered the grubber kick. An effort play he hasn't really made in the past. But it shows he may be back to full fitness. He was carrying knee problems all through 2020 and 2021. Waqa Blake has shown that he really provides extra punch and Bailey Simonsson was fantastic in the air.

    • Ha ha 

      Sivo chased and Waqa passed - both in the same game

  • Thanks LB for your summary and thoughts. I loved reading it very much . At least the South's game in a fortnight will not be on a public holiday Monday like both our losing games against Tigers and Bulldogs were ( for those superstitious fans ) .  I must admit though that Souths scare me they way they have humiliated us in past few years . 

    • Curates Egg LB.....ie good in parts.

      Agreeable first....Yes to your comment re Mahoney and your mate for noting that all Snakes are no good!

      Mahoney now must be being close to being sacked.....I would love to do some deal to let him go now and some sort of contra is done with Wests so we don't lose Ice! Trouble is the dogs would probably pick their current hooker ahead of him anyway.

      This lead's me to the negative, Papallili and I don't believe stats as you know unless they are dogs balls! He definitely does not make a most disappointing list in my eyes.

      Kyle Rodwell told me a lot about him in 2/3 minutes......when he went on and the game was still not over, the single thing he should have had in his mind was if we are defending, make sure I make the tackle, if we have the ball make sure I don't drop it.......kiss....keep it simple stupid! ......case rests (and yes I am judging him harshly as I never turn off a movie or a show without watching a good 20 minutes).....but I suspect that 2/3 minutes will never appear on his highlights reel.

      One of the most impressive things and yes Simmo did well in the air was Sivo's two handed catch on his line and the way he handled it.......I always though that in the air was one of Sivo's great strengths and he has not let me down in that department, I do suspect though if you line our whole pack up against him in a 60 minute sprint that only Reed Mahoney would be slower. He would have to come from behind Lane and Paulo and at the end of 60 I doubt he would make it.

       

      • 5 missed tackles aint great Poppa, but each to their own, wasn't a bad game by Papali'i by any means.

         

        But you say all Snakes are no good, does that mean Snake himself here too?

        • Dyl missed 6 tackles so are you going to put him on the most disappointing list as well?

          • Oh Al, go away you pelican, for a forward it is more concerning to myself. Plus is out of character, Mahoney for example usually misses that amount every 2nd or 3rd week so i expect that due to where he is in the middle.

        • Come on LB your a school teacher, would you let any of your kids play with a snake that is into bondage and anal bleaching?

          On Ice's missed tackles, I can only remember one significantly that he positioned himself poorly for. Otherwise nothing significant came to my mind.....did you see them and judge them or just read the stats.

          Look at the balance of the game and those miss tackles (46) to me were not representative of our defence, I think the eager beavers that count them do not reflect lets saying player effectively stopping someone and the impetus or second tackler completing on post contact metres classify it as a missed tackle.

          • Lol or the Snake we know should bring him to my work and have him teach my students about life, see how they turn out.

            • False idols are bad at your age, more big brother influence me thinks. LOL

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