Tag Archive: Wade Graham


Dugan and Orford out

Canberra will face an early test of their depth when they head into Sunday’s round one NRL clash with Cronulla minus big names Josh Dugan and Matt Orford. Rising star Dugan has a calf injury and failed to train on Saturday, while veteran halfback Orford is a definite non-starter with a groin problem. Dugan is extremely doubtful and his place at fullback will be taken by David Milne. Nineteen-year-old half Sam Williams comes into the squad for Orford. Whether the 2010 Toyota Cup halfback of the year starts remains to be seen with hooker Alan Tongue a strong chance of taking over the playmaking duties. Star signing Orford, 32, has been hampered during pre-season with a groin strain and has not been able to recover in time to face the Sharks. The Raiders are already without former Test five-eighth Terry Campese until midseason after a knee reconstruction, his place taken by Josh McCrone. Continue reading

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Injuries to upset Raiders v Sharks opener

There’s as much uncertainty over the Cronulla Sharks and Canberra Raiders sides as there is about Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s popularity right now. At least in the national capital on Sunday, supporters and rivals won’t have to wait long for a decision. Up to seven players named in the two extended squads by respective coaches Shane Flanagan and David Furner, are in some doubt for the 2pm game at Canberra Stadium. The Sharks have centre Dean Collis and forward Anthony Tupou (leg injuries) undergoing constant treatment this week, but they’ve been named in the starting 13, along with a six-man bench. The Raiders new half recruit, Matt Orford, and former Sharks winger Blake Ferguson are among five doubtfuls. Continue reading

Sharks have confidence in Kelly

In terms of an individual performance, it was just about a career killer. Thrust into an NRL starting debut, 19-year-old Albert Kelly, a cousin of Greg Inglis, endured a forgettable occasion. In a 30-8 defeat by South Sydney at Toyota Stadium last March, Kelly, picked by then Cronulla coach Ricky Stuart at fullback, was haunted by the high ball, conceding two tries with cringe-inducing mistakes and looking thoroughly lost and out of his depth thereafter. Yet a deflated Stuart, entering his infuriating final months with the Sharks, would only utter positive remarks about the teenager in the aftermath. ”What I am wishing is I had another 16 of him. He is going to be a real player that kid,” he said. Stuart is gone but his attitude then is reflective of how Kelly is viewed in the Sutherland Shire. Continue reading

Kelly to get nod as Sharks No.7

Young gun Albert Kelly is set to start at halfback for Cronulla ahead of former rookie of the year Tim Smith when the club kicks off their NRL season in Canberra on Sunday week.

Kelly looks to have won the pre-season battle to partner ex-Penrith five-eighth Wade Graham in the halves as the Sharks look to lift themselves into top eight contenders.

The 19-year-old cousin of superstar Greg Inglis made a soul-destroying debut at fullback in round one last year before going on to play just five first grade games.

But training back at his preferred position he has impressed coach Shane Flanagan and is likely to get the nod ahead of the inconsistent Smith when the Sharks’ first side of 2011 is named.

“Wado’s (Graham’s) going pretty good, I think we’ve just got to find him a permanent partner, that’s the hard thing,” captain Paul Gallen said. Continue reading

Trials round up.

As a NQ Cowboys follower, I expect no less from a player that has left our ranks under hazy circumstances other than to go onto success for another club. Travis Burns ($155,100 HLV) it seems will prove to be another statistic in this ever growing list, it has been reported he had a blinder and made an unforgettable statement in his pursuit to be the other half running along side Luke Walsh ($210,700 HLV) for the Panthers this season. Wade Graham ($167,200 HLV) is also looking to secure this position but after the weekend he may have the odds against him, also having had his differences in the past with Coach Elliott may work against his desire for a starting role. With Luke Lewis ($220,200 CTW/HLV), Petero Civinoceva ($271,300 FRF) and Trent Waterhouse ($307,800 2RF) to return the Panthers are certainly poised for an early attack in this years competition. The Eels on the other hand could possibly see reason for a little concern seeming they almost had their A side on the paddock, but with Daniel Mortimer ($268,000 HLV) and Ben Smith ($189,600 CTW/2RF) exiting because of injury early and Nathan Hindmarsh ($367,700 2RF) a no show, the Eels won’t be too worried.

PENRITH PANTHERS 32 (Travis Burns 2, Shane Elford, Luke Walsh, Michael Gordon, Ryan Walker tries; Michael Gordon 3, Travis Burns goals) def PARRAMATTA EELS 12 (Luke Burt, Ben Smith tries; Luke Burt 2 goals) at CUA Stadium. Crowd: 11,113.

The first half of the Dogs V Dragons line ups looked almost like a standard Telstra Cup fixture, with Jamal Idris ($153,300 CTW) for the Dogs showing what he is potentially capable of week in week out with his unique attacking style culminating in 2 tries for the giant youngster. Ben Barba ($91,100 HLV) also showed he is more than ready if veteran Brett Kimmorley ($237,300 HLV) should happen upon injury with some good touches when on the field. For the Saints, Nathan Fien ($211,500 HLV/HOK) continues to impress Coach Bennett, constantly threatening from Dummy Half and will no doubt slot into the run on side somewhere in this seasons Dragons campaign. In true trials fashion both sides made plenty of errors and it was difficult to split the two, defence being the only winner in this tight fought contest.

DRAGONS 16 (Lett, Green, Vickery Tries; Goodwin 2 Goals)BULLDOGS 14 (Idris 2, Nanai Tries; Turner 1 Goal)

Big things are expected from the Rabbitohs and the Titans this season, if we were to go by their rosters it should be a safe bet on a finals berth for both. The bunnies didn’t throw their big money forwards onto the field preferring to show off their depth against the Titans, and they held their own. For the Titans, the Prince ($287,300 HLV) Bird ($250,000 HLV/2RF) combination had another game to find the common ground between the flair and creativity of Prince mixing with the glass smashing brutality of Bird. The Bunnies youngsters, trying to capture the eye of Coach Lang had some flair of their own whilst the Titans proved to be more tradesman like in their performance. The Titans also played their bargain Ex Kiwi International Clinton Toopi (Not Listed) who brought plenty to the table.

Gold Coast Titans 28 (M Rogers, C Toopi, R Brown, S Prince, W Zillman tries; S Prince 4 goals) defeated South Sydney Rabbitohs 22 (L Capewell 2, I Luke, J Vaivai tries; C Sandow 2, A Reynolds 1 goal). Crowd 5500.

Ben Te’o ($203,100 2RF) performed, scoring twice in what could may possibly be the year for the talented back rower, after showing plenty of potential the former Tiger may have finally settled within the Brisbane outfit. As reported, Israel Folau ($139,800 CTW) also shared the Fullback position with Corey Norman (Not Listed) who is only 18 but showing plenty of confidence and try scoring ability. Albeit an experimental outing for the Broncos it was considered successful. For the Green Machine it was Terry Campese ($331,900 HLV) and Joel Monaghan ($154,500 CTW) who stood ahead of the rest, behind a pack that never let them down. Dane Tilse ($195,600 FRF) ate up the metres while stalwart Alan Tongue ($238,800 2RF) proved that his workload is as high as ever and the Scott Logan ($162,100 FRF), Dane Tilse, David Shillington ($175,500 FRF) and Bronson Harrison ($292,200 2RF) combination could prove to be a dark horse in this seasons high profile packs.

Brisbane 32 d Canberra 24 *Will Post stats asap.