Category: Sharks

Judiciary to review three incidents

The match review committee is poised to wreak havoc with the opening week plans of several NRL sides after a potentially costly final round of trial matches over the weekend. Penrith, Cronulla and the Sydney Roosters all face nervous waits ahead of the match review committee releasing their charges on Monday, with key players Luke Walsh (Panthers), Jeremy Smith (Sharks) and Test forward Nate Myles (Roosters) involved in questionable tackles. Myles’ incident appears the most serious of the three, despite no action being taken by the referees after a lifting tackle on Wests Tigers fullback Wade McKinnon. McKinnon lost the ball after appearing to be dumped on his head ten minutes into the second half at the Sydney Football Stadium – the oversight compounded when the Roosters cleaned up possession and scored in the corner. Continue reading


Once the season proper starts I will be looking at each team and some of their key players as we get closer to the start of the silly season – the bye rounds and I’ll use “Dream Team Pro” so at least their will be a bit more information and statistics than last year.

Every year round 9 has a huge impact on coaches with ½ the NRL clubs (8) having their first bye round.  No doubt everyone has had a good look at bye rounds when developing a strategy for the 2011 campaign and finalising your 25-man squad before the round 1 kick of on March 11. 

There is no point in talking about individual players before there is some form on the board so I’ll just point out a couple of other things for the newer coaches to Dream Team that you will need to take into consideration when finalising on your squad.  Continue reading

Wolfman howls in trial – Twice!

David Williams produced the perfect return from injury, scoring a double in his first game in more than a year in Manly’s 18-0 NRL trial victory over Cronulla. “The Wolfman” opened the scoring with his first touch of the ball on Friday night when he pounced on a pin-point grubber from utility forward Terence Seuseu in the 11th minute. Williams was in again 20 minutes into the second half, capitalising on some good lead-up work from Joe Galuvao to crash over and cap off the dream return. But it was in the 35th minute that Williams’ shoulder overcame its biggest test as he was crunched by two Cronulla enforcers, before bouncing up and high-fiving team-mates. Continue reading

With just two more rounds before the finals start I thought I would introduce something new and look at the best performances each weekend in the lead up to the big one, The 2010 NEX-Cup Grand Final.

As we all look for something extra to secure our spot in the finals you can bet the real NRL coaches will be doing what they can to secure their spot as well.  We should finally see some consistent performances from the NRL front runners, which should mean regular high 700 plus scores from our coaches like we saw in round 20.

The criteria for my review are the players must be a regular in their clubs line up each week, averaging 40 or more for the season and posted a score of 55 or better in the particular round.

(74) Paul Gallen 2RF @ $332,600.00, a jump of $10,600.00, now averaging 51.12 from 17 games.  In 17 games he has only had 1 score below 40 and that was a 38 way back in round 2.  His 74 in round 20 tops his previous high score of 65 in round 4 against the Eels and since then he has only 4 games below 50.  The score of 74 came from 48 TA, 19 MG and 10 OL.  I had a chance to pick him up in round 8 when he reached a season low of $319,000.00 but didn’t because I was concerned about loosing him through suspension.  Other coaches may have had the same opinion because he only owned by 11.85%, a total of 11,501Continue reading

Sharks face injury crisis

Cronulla’s preparations have been thrown into disarray ahead of their NRL clash with Manly on Saturday night, with captain Trent Barrett and winger Blake Ferguson ruled out with injury. Barrett has a shoulder problem, while Ferguson hasn’t been able to recover from a rib complaint. In further bad news for Ricky Stuart’s men, halfback John Morris and NSW prop Kade Snowden are also considered only 50/50 chances of playing. Morris has a knee problem, while Snowden is suffering from an illness. Tim Smith, who was dropped last week, will compete with Scott Porter and Albert Kelly for Barrett’s five-eighth spot and Morris’ halfback position should he also be ruled out. Issac Gordon will make an earlier than expected return from a hamstring injury to replace Ferguson.

Snowden cops a week – Heighington clear to play

NSW Origin hopeful Kade Snowden has been robbed of his final chance to impress Blues selectors after accepting a one week suspension. The emerging Sharks forward is one of a number of up-and-coming stars in line to represent a new generation Blues team in Origin III. But the Cronulla bookend has been rubbed out of his final audition before the Blues side is selected, pleading guilty to a grade one dangerous contact with a kicker charge from last Sunday’s loss to St George Illawarra. Snowden has been strongly tipped to be ushered onto the NSW bench with a view to becoming a future Blues enforcer but will miss the opportunity to go head-to-head with Queensland prop Matt Scott when Cronulla play North Queensland on Saturday night.

Another NSW Origin hopeful, Wests Tigers backrower Chris Heighington, is clear to play against the Dragons on Friday night after pleading guilty to a dangerous throw but escaping suspension.

NSW forward Luke O’Donnell has been handed a three-match suspension for a dangerous tackle that will keep him out of the third State of Origin match.O’Donnell entered an early guilty plea to the charge stemming from the spear tackle on Maroons winger Darius Boyd which sparked an all-in brawl in the Blues’ 34-6 loss to Queensland in Origin II at Suncorp Stadium on Wednesday night. As his North Queensland club have only two NRL matches plus a bye beforehand, he is ruled out of the dead rubber third Origin match at Sydney’s ANZ Stadium on July 7 when the Blues will attempt to salvage some pride after a fifth straight series loss. O’Donnell appeared lucky not to face further judiciary action for an apparent head butt and punch to the face of Maroons forward David Taylor in the aftermath of his tackle.

Fellow Blues enforcer Paul Gallen escaped suspension after an early guilty plea to a grade one careless tackle charge for his 23rd minute high shot on Nate Myles.

The poor old Sharks, they just can’t get it right on or off the field but when it comes to the Dream Team they do have a list of players that are worth considering after their final bye in round 14.  Everyone knows about Paul Gallen (2RF) @ $333,300.00 averaging 49.55 and Luke Douglas (FRF) @ $265,100.00 averaging 40.45.  So rather than talk about those players I have selected three others that might be worth a look and might be more in your price range at this end of the season.

Kade Snowden (FRF) @ $259,100.00 averaging 39.55.  I have watched this bloke for the last three years in Dream Team.  I had him in my team in 2008 but he just wasn’t getting a regular game.  I considered him at the start of this season but his starting price ($274,600.00) and the Sharks draw made me look elsewhere for a FRF.  Well he has played every game for the sharks this season and while he is not popular amongst Dream Team players there is a lot to like about this guy.  His lowest score came in round 6 where he scored 29 points and could have been more, loosing 9 points in mistakes.  Every other round has been 36 or better with his highest score of 47 came in round 8 against the Dragons.  While his tackle count fluctuates he has pulled off 343 for the year with a low of 21 in round 7 and a high of 41 in round 8.  Looking at his season so you can pretty much expect tackles in the high 20’s in each game.   He has scored 117 points in MG (you can expect 10 per game), a try and some points in LB and OL but on the down side he has conceded 49 points from mistakes, 21 from missed tackles, 14 from errors in general play and 14 in penalties.  At his season average his market price is about right but with scores of 40 and 45 in his last two games you can expect his price to go up if he scores 38 or more in his next game.  He is one of those rare players who deliver their average each game and there would be a lot of coaches happy with scores of 39 coming from their lower priced line up.     Continue reading

Judiciary visits

Melbourne’s Jeff Lima is likely to miss the NRL club’s round 12 clash with Canterbury after being charged with a dangerous throw. The Storm prop has been booked for a 41st minute tackle, also involving Adam Blair, on Canberra’s Travis Waddell during Melbourne’s 17-6 victory on Saturday night. Lima will miss the clash with the Bulldogs if he enters an early guilty plea and also if he unsuccessfully defends the grade one charge at the NRL judiciary. The Storm have a bye this weekend and play Canterbury at AAMI Stadium on May 30.

Cronulla winger Isaac Gordon will avoid a ban with the early plea to a charge of dangerous contact with the legs or feet. He will miss Saturday’s clash with Parramatta if he unsuccessfully defends the charge.

Dean Collis rushed back

Cronulla centre Dean Collis has brought forward his return to first grade by three weeks, answering an urgent SOS from coach Ricky Stuart ahead of Saturday night’s crucial meeting with Newcastle at Toyota Stadium. With Ben Pomeroy out for up to four weeks with a hand injury, the Sharks mentor was desperately searching for a replacement when Collis volunteered his services. Originally slated for a comeback from ankle ligament damage in Round 10, Collis will now line-up against the Knights in just his second appearance of the year.