You missed Jennings, he was devastating last year. Quick ball and he will tear up an oppositions centres
We haven't had a coach with that attitude in the last 10 years at least.
Chad Townsend was everywhere on offence. Always supporting the ball runner. Was never far from the action. Put in some great grubbers with one resulting in Friends try. Really impressed with him. His defence on the other hand. Was owned 1 on 1 a few times and on more then one occasion he rushed out only to be standing behind enemy lines. Pretty poor in that regard. Maloney V2.0 for sure. No worse than Johnson to be fair and he does give 110%. Going to enjoy watching him play this season.
How awesome was Ben Matulino? Must have been allowed to have his tuna pasta salad before the game. He was on fire! I was having flashbacks to 2012 but this time with a lot more of an offload. Going to be a very interesting headache for Matt Elliott in deciding who our prop and 2nd row rotation will be. Im sold on Mutts moving back to his original position. Easily my MoM.
Feleti Mateo was back to his silky best after dropping the ball early on in the game. His offloads while the team still had the forward really opened up Wigan. Surprised to see him play after hearing only 3 weeks ago that he hadn't trained fully with the team. Really really hoping he can start Round 1 and continue this games form for the whole season.
Albert Vete was such a handful tonight. He stood tall in every tackle and make some handy offloads that weren't forced. He's not far off 1st grade material. My opinion on him is somewhat tainted by what I saw at the first week of training and how unfit he was but he could play two fifteen minute stints like Russell Packer did last season if needed I reckon.
Im a huge fan of Steve Waetford and he didn't disappoint me tonight. Looked really good out there and didn't look out of place even when playing Fullback. Hope the Warrior Reserves play him in the halves all season instead of playing musical chairs with him.
My main man Jerome Ropati went well IMO. Has lost a lot of pace but his head is still as sharp as ever. Wonder whether he can regain his speed?
Nathan Friend really stood out. Was really pleased to see him scoot from dummy half without overdoing it or overplaying his hand. Good to see him get a try. He'll be essential to our season.
Great honour for Sam Rapira being our captain tonight. Still a solid ball carrier and still IMO has the quickest play of the ball of any prop going. Both him and Jacob Lillyman went about their work in the dependable fashion we have all come to know and expect.
I thought John Palavi and Agnatius Paasi went well. Paasi has a good read on defence despite his edge giving away a few tries. Palavi ran well and hit even better. Handy fringe graders.
Anyone know anything on Jared Wilson who was meant to be marking Burgess? What about the level of Malo Solomona's involvement with the Warriors? Last time I saw him was when he was playing for the Pt Chev Pirates...
RP I doubt very much it was the Wigan Fellah that caused the problem. The NZ fans he was angry with were a bunch higher up in the stands, he had no issue with the NZ fan who was placating him....the proof in the pudding for mine was when he finally sat down his Missus got up and started Hurling a tirade at that group he was upset with.....In any case I made a Point of approaching him and his lot after and shaking his hand ....he said in your broad Wiganese " You alright Fellah...thanks mate.....We're ok Mate don't worry....was a good game your lads played well "Sup42 I think you're description of our structures from the Huddersfield match has always been apt since Maguire, then Wane took over. Looking like advancing Roman legions. We are a very structured team, and I think that it helps the youngsters fit in. Whilst we are structured their is still room in their for individual brilliance as well. I'm really pleased for the kids who played today.
Hopefully our defence in the middle of the pitch will tighten up with O'Loughlin returning and hopefully McIllorum will get back up to speed. O'Loughlin's influence on us should not be underestimated. That said I worry that he's only played three matches in about 6 months, we might need Farrell or one of the other younger forwards to step up in to a leadership role. Sadly the person I always saw as stepping up as a forward leader/organiser has gone to the dark side a couple of years ago (Joel Tomkins).and the next experienced forward from last year were probably Harrison Hanson and Mossop, who have now moved to Salford and the NRL respectively.
I suspect getting used to two refs was one of the main reasons for this game for us. If SLE can afford we should move to this system as well.
Also sorry to hear about the agro from the wigan supporter. Every team has its share of numpty supporters, and although we don't have as many as some of the other SL teams I could mention, I'm disappointed one bothered to go over.
If we do another match out your way again I'll be looking to get there.... assuming we don't have any more kids and I can actually save some money.
RP I doubt very much it was the Wigan Fellah that caused the problem. The NZ fans he was angry with were a bunch higher up in the stands, he had no issue with the NZ fan who was placating him....the proof in the pudding for mine was when he finally sat down his Missus got up and started Hurling a tirade at that group he was upset with.....In any case I made a Point of approaching him and his lot after and shaking his hand ....he said in your broad Wiganese " You alright Fellah...thanks mate.....We're ok Mate don't worry....was a good game your lads played well "
As I say....sitting with some of the Wigan crew was a real buzz....one Wigan Lass said to me " I'm glad we are all happy down here and not part of that lot " LOL
As for the tightening of your D up the middle......Ben Matulino ( a Star when he on fire ) was on fire....as Was Feleti Mateo .Jacob Lillyman & Sam Rapira.....last year when those blokes played like that they Ripped the Roosters Ruck apart... I wouldn't be too concerned Wigan had their hands full when that ( once rated best Four prop rotation in the NRL ) clicked.
That passage where they opened Wigan up is pretty much how our up and down inconsistent team has built the secound or third best ever Win Loss ratio In the NRL over the structured Mebourne Storm.
Two points :Jared Wilson - played for Junior Kiwis last year I think. Remember seeing his name but didnt watch it.
I think he might still be under 20 - he played for Penrith last yearl.
He goes alright - he would of been playing with blokes he doesnt even know.
He looked bad on TV but plays with plenty of intent.
Townsend was the most impressive for me - man did he want to be wearing that jersey - him and Thomas will work good together.
Not fair to be comparing him to Maloney at all.
Again the centre defense was terrible = but half of them were fox players.
John Palavi is solid but didnt notice him at all. He needs to get more athletic or simply fitter.
Paasi is a prop, tight 2nd rower nothing else - played too many minutes. In better physical shape but he is the reason they got carved up on the edge imo.
Definately like him as a 2nd tier prop.
Malo Solomona looked OK - much better shape than at the Pirates.
Agreed Rapira & Matulinos play the ball - outstanding.
If Waetford has a chance of breaking into the NRL squad I reckon it is at 14.
Manfredi's try was pretty good.
Well if we can't have the coach and we're talking players.Hypothetical question for you all. If you could buy one player from that Wigan team who would it be?
Well if we can't have the coach and we're talking players.
I think we are a bit spoilt taking your attacking mastermind off your hands already.
I would have your Captain in a heart beat. We already have a good Captain in Mannering who plays a busy game Like Lockers, but two players with their SAS like mindset with Tomkins , Leuluai , Friend , would give us a leadership group that would lift our excitement machines in our relatively young Club to a level that the Manly's , Roosters , and Rabbit enjoy off the field and when the chips are down with twenty minutes to go.