Category: Sea Eagles


GUILTY! The Judiciary Fallout

The NRL judiciary has been given the night off this week with all six players charged by the match review committee taking the early guilty plea on Tuesday. Manly co-captain Jason King, Canberra prop Brett White, Warriors five-eighth James Maloney and Cronulla hooker Paul Aiton will all sit out one game, while Matt Bowen and Luke Walsh are both free to play. King’s absence, for a knee lift in last weekend’s loss to Melbourne, leaves the Sea Eagles without a skipper with Jamie Lyon out for a month with a hamstring strain. White’s absence has opened the door for Josh Miller to come into Canberra’s squad, while young gun Isaac John replaces Maloney in the Warriors No.6 jumper.

The NRL Match-Review committee today laid six charges from the weekend games; Brett White, Jason King, Matt Bowen, James Maloney, Paul Aiton and Luke Walsh all having cases to answer. Sharks Paul Aiton is facing two weeks on the sidelines after he was charged with an alleged heat butt on Raiders Joel Thompson. Aiton will miss one week if he pleads guilty, or could face two weeks if he fights the charge and loses. Canberra’s Brett White and Manly’s Jason King could both miss a week of football after being charged with Grade 1 dangerous contact for lifting knees while running with the ball. Matt Bowen is facing a Grade 1 dangerous contact charge for sliding in with the feet on Broncos Matt Gillett, but will avoid suspension if he takes the early guilty plea. Warriors five-eighth James Maloney could miss his side’s clash with the Wests Tigers after he was charged for dangerous contact on Jarryd Hayne. Panthers halfback Luke Walsh has been charged with a high tackle on Knights James McManus, but will not miss the Round 2 clash with Parramatta. Continue reading

Cowboys fullback Matt Bowen will today come under scrutiny from the NRL match review committee for lashing out with his foot to try and stop a try in Friday night’s 16-14 defeat of the Broncos. Bowen was not put on report, but the 56th minute incident was flagged for review after he twice tried to use his boot to stop Brisbane utility Matt Gillett grounding the ball. Gillett managed to get across the tryline, but was penalised for a double movement in a crucial call by match officials as the Broncos were trailing 16-10 at the time. The incident is one of several that will be studied closely today by the NRL match review panel to determine whether contact was made, including allegations of lifting knees against Manly prop Jason King and Canberra’s Brett White. Warriors halfback James Maloney also faces an anxious wait to learn whether he is charged over an early tackle on Parramatta star Jarryd Hayne while he was fielding a kick during the Eels 24-18 win at Eden Park on Saturday night. Continue reading

Lyon limps off in loss to storm

A serious hamstring injury to co-captain Jamie Lyon has poured further salt into the wound for Manly following their NRL season-opening loss to Melbourne Storm. Lyon came off just before halftime in the Sea Eagles’ 18-6 defeat in the Victorian capital and the early diagnosis is that he will spend at least a month on the sidelines after a suspected tear to his hamstring. Manly coach Des Hasler was downbeat when quizzed on Lyon’s progress following the loss. “He’s the biggest concern with a hamstring, he’ll need scans to know to what extent that’s torn,” Hasler said. “It’s a significant blow, particularly with the points Jamie can score. He’s a potential match-winner every time he touches the ball and it appears he’ll be laid up for sometime.” Lyon wasn’t the only injury concern for the Sea Eagles with rookie winger William Hopoate (shoulder) and Matt Ballin (concussion) also nursing injuries out of what was a physical first round match-up. Having gone to the main break level at 6-6, Manly played themselves out of the contest during an error-prone second stanza where they completed little more than 50 percent of their sets. Continue reading

1. Anthony Mitchell (Eels) – The Eels have struggled to find a regular dummy-half in recent years but with the emergence of 21-year-old Anthony Mitchell in late 2010 their search could soon be over. The highly-rated young hooker boasts all the skills – lightning service, a crisp passing game and speed off the mark. Likely to be part of a three-man rotation for the Eels this year, he will battle for the No.9 jersey with Matt Keating and new arrival Casey McGuire but the general consensus is that the hooking spot will become his alone in the long term. Mitchell played three games for the Eels at the back end of the 2010 season, scoring two tries, and was selected in the Indigenous All Stars side earlier this year.

2. Siuatonga Likiliki (Knights) – Boasting one of the greatest names in rugby league history – right up there with the likes of former Bronco Steele Retchless and South Sydney’s Bronco Djura – Siuatonga Likiliki made a name for himself playing for the Warriors’ premiership-winning Toyota Cup side last season when he scored 19 tries in 25 games. Now with Newcastle, the 20-year-old speedster already has tongues wagging in the Hunter where he will join Akuila Uate in a lightning-fast backline. A Junior Kiwis representative in 2010, Likiliki was named in both the 2009 and 2010 Toyota Cup Team of the Year. Continue reading

Sydney Roosters star Todd Carney is out of Friday’s NRL season opener against South Sydney at the Sydney Football Stadium. Carney, who has endured a torrid lead-up to the start of the new campaign, following his arrest for drink-driving 10 days ago, has not been named in the Roosters side after failing to recover from January groin surgery. The Dally M Medallist sustained the injury playing for Australia in the Four Nations clash with New Zealand in Auckland in October. Coach Brian Smith named Braith Anasta at five-eighth alongside Mitchell Pearce with Carney expected to be back for the round two clash with Manly. However, the Roosters are boosted by the surprise return of secondrower Mitch Aubusson who had been expected to be sidelined until round four with a shoulder injury. Souths coach John Lang said he had been preparing for Carney to play and believed the troubled playmaker’s off-field problems would have no effect on his game. “He had a great season last year and I see no reason why he won’t pick up where he left off last year,” Lang said. “Often for players, the game and training, if there’s been a few problems that can be a bit of a relief for them rather than another pressure.” Continue reading

King in luck over Warriors tackle

Manly co-captain Jason King has escaped a charge for a high shot on Warriors forward Micheal Luck which sparked a brawl and incensed the crowd during Saturday night’s NRL trial match in Auckland.

Luck was assisted from the field after the brutal tackle, which local media said created a “powder keg atmosphere” at North Harbour Stadium, where a crowd of around 15,000 turned out to see the 14-12 win to the Sea Eagles.

The NRL match review committee laid no charges on Monday, conceding the poor quality of video footage available from trial matches can be a factor in their decisions during the pre-season.

“As is the case with trial matches, the lack and quality of footage available to the match review committee can make determining the extent of any incident somewhat difficult, particularly when analysing the point of contact,” a statement from the league said. Continue reading

We are just 12 days from the kick off to the 2011 NRL/NEX Dream Team competitions so there isn’t much time left to work out that all important campaign strategy. 

In Part 1 – I talked about the Raiders and the advantage they had for coaches in the 2011 season.  They are not the only team with an advantage when it comes to the early bye rounds.  Another team with a similar advantage is the Warriors

The Warriors have their 1st bye in round 12 with the Raiders.  Be wary though – if you stack your team with players from the Raiders and Warriors it may cost you a win in your round 12 head-to-head clash in your individual league or get you knocked out of the Eliminator Competition.   

If you are considering the Warriors, they have some good scoring options to choose from.  New players to the club, old players, players returning from injury and a couple of cheap options to make you money and trade up to those high priced stars.  The down side to the Warriors is they share their round 17 bye with the Cowboys, Sea Eagles, Storm, Tigers, and the TitansContinue reading

Manly 14 – Auckland 12

Brett Stewart has made a successful comeback to rugby league in Manly’s 14-12 pre-season trial win over the New Zealand Warriors at North Harbour Stadium in Auckland. The gifted fullback played 20 minutes against the New Zealand side and declared himself on track to play in his side’s round one NRL match against the Melbourne Storm at AAMI Park on March 12. Stewart, returning to the game after consecutive season-ending knee injuries, hadn’t played since the first round of the competition in 2010. The 25 year-old said he “couldn’t be happier” with his cameo appearance and was keen to get some more game time under his belt. A try to fringe second rower Vic Mauro eight minutes from time was enough to give his side the win. The Warriors had led for much of the physical encounter but couldn’t quite close out the match. Continue reading

Oldfield ready to face Vatuvei

Manly winger Michael Oldfield made his debut against an all-conquering St George Illawarra side last year but on Saturday he’ll face the ultimate test for an NRL winger. The youngster was named in Des Hasler’s 24-man squad to take on the New Zealand Warriors in Auckland and appears set to take on the most fearsome winger in the game Manu Vatuvei. Oldfield, who impressed in his round 23 debut against the eventual premiers, enjoyed a fruitful Toyota Cup season in which he scored 13 tries. But he has never faced someone like the 190cm, 112kg Vatuvei. “I’ll do my best,” Oldfield said. “Hopefully my centres help me out but I don’t know, I’ll just try to hold onto the bloke … He’s a big boy. Continue reading