Round 3 Discussion

Big Pete

International Captain
Brisbane Broncos vs. Parramatta Eels
Suncorp Stadium, Thursday 28 May 2020
Kick Off: 7:50pm


1. Jamayne Isaako 2. Corey Oates 3. Kotoni Staggs 4. Darius Boyd 5. Jesse Arthars 6. Anthony Milford 7. Brodie Croft 8. Thomas Flegler 9. Jake Turpin 10. Payne Haas 11. Alex Glenn (c) 12. Jamil Hopoate 13. Patrick Carrigan

14. Herbie Farnworth 15. Joe Ofahengaue 16. Rhys Kennedy 17. Ethan Bullemor

18. Xavier Coates 19. Tesi Niu 20. Tom Dearden 21. Matthew Lodge

1. Clinton Gutherson 2. Maika Sivo 3. Michael Jennings 4. Waqa Blake 5. Blake Ferguson 6. Dylan Brown 7. Mitchell Moses 8. Reagan Campbell-Gillard 9. Reed Mahoney 10. Junior Paulo 11. Shaun Lane 12. Ryan Matterson 13. Marata Niukore

14. Brad Takairangi 15. Ray Stone 16. Kane Evans 17. Peni Terepo

18. Oregon Kaufusi 19. George Jennings 20. Jaeman Salmon 21. David Gower

North Queensland Cowboys vs. Gold Coast Titans
Queensland Country Bank Stadium, Friday 29 May 2020
Kick Off: 6:00pm


1. Valentine Holmes 2. Kyle Feldt 3. Justin O'Neil 4. Esan Marsters 5. Ben Hampton 6. Scott Drinkwater 7. Jake Clifford 8. Josh McGuire 9. Jake Granville 10. Jordan McLean 11. Mitchell Dunn 12. Coen Hess 13. Jason Taumalolo

14. Reece Robson 15. John Asiata 16. Shane Wright 17. Francis Molo

18. Corey Jensen 19. Tom Gilbert 20. Tom Opacic 21. Reuben Cotter

1. Tyrone Roberts 2. Anthony Don 3. Dale Copley 4. Tyrone Peachey 5. Phillip Sami 6. Ash Taylor 7. Jamal Fogarty 8. Moeaki Fotuaika 9. Nathan Peats 10. Sam Lisone 11. Kevin Proctor 12. Keegan Hipgrave 13. Jai Arrow

14. Erin Clark 15. Jai Whitbread 16. Jarrod Wallace 17. Shannon Boyd

18. Bryce Cartwright 19. Mitch Rein 20. Brian Kelly 21. Jonus Pearson

Sydney Roosters vs. South Sydney Rabbitohs
Bankwest Stadium, Friday 29 May 2020
Kick Off: 7:55pm


1. James Tedesco 2. Daniel Tupou 3. Josh Morris 4. Joseph Manu 5. Brett Morris 6. Luke Keary 7. Kyle Flanagan 8. Jared Warea-Hargreaves 9. Jake Friend 10. Isaac Liu 11. Boyd Cordner 12. Angus Crichton 13. Victor Radley

14. Sam Verrills 15. Sitili Tupouniua 16. Nat Butcher 17. Lindsay Collins

18. Siosiua Taukeiaho 19. Ryan Hall 20. Lachlan Lam 21. Poasa Faamausili

1. Latrell Mitchell 2. Dane Gagai 3. Campbell Graham 4. Braidon Burns 5. Alex Johnston 6. Troy Dargan 7. Adam Reynolds 8. Tevita Tatola 9. Damien Cook 10. Thomas Burgess 11. Jaydn Su’A 12. Cameron Murray 13. Liam Knight

14. Mark Nicholls 15. Ethan Lowe 16. Bayley Sironen 17. Patrick Mago

18. Bryson Goodwin 19. Tom Amone 20. James Roberts 21. Keaon Koloamatangi

Warriors vs. St George Illawarra Dragons
Central Coast Stadium, Saturday 30 May 2020
Kick Off 3:00pm


1. Roger Tuivasa-Sheck 2. Patrick Herbert 3. Peta Hiku 4. Gerard Beale 5. Ken Maumalo 6. Kodi Nikorima 7. Blake Green 8. Lachlan Burr 9. Wayde Egan 10. Jamayne Taunoa-Brown 11. Isaiah Papali'i 12. Tohu Harris 13. Adam Blair

14. Karl Lawton 15. King Vuniyayawa 16. Agnatius Paasi 17. Eliesa Katoa

18. Chanel Harris-Tavita 20. Josh Curran 21. Adam Pompey 22. Jack Murchie

1. Matthew Dufty 2. Jordan Pereira 3. Brayden Williame 4. Zac Lomax 5. Mikaele Ravalawa 6. Corey Norman 7. Ben Hunt 8. Korbin Sims 9. Cameron McInnes 10. Paul Vaughan 11. Tyson Frizell 12. Tariq Sims 13. James Graham

14. Josh Kerr 15. Blake Lawrie 16. Tyrell Fuimaono 17. Euan Aitken

18. Trent Merrin 19. Adam Clune 20. Jacob Host 21. Jackson Ford

Cronulla Sharks vs. Wests Tigers
Bankwest Stadium, Saturday 30 May 2020
Kick Off 5:30pm


1. Will Kennedy 2. Sione Katoa 3. Josh Dugan 4. Jesse Ramien 5. Ronaldo Mulitalo 6. Shaun Johnson 7. Chad Townsend 8. Andrew Fifita 9. Blayke Brailey 10. Aaron Woods 11. Briton Nikora 12. Wade Graham 13. Jack Williams

14. Connor Tracey 15. Braden Hamlin-Uele 16. Toby Rudolf 17. Scott Sorensen

18. Billy Magoulias 19. Matt Moylan 20. Royce Hunt 21. Siosifa Talakai

1. Adam Doueihi 2. David Nofoaluma 3. Joseph Leilua 4. Moses Mbye 5. Robert Jennings 6. Benji Marshall 7. Luke Brooks 8. Josh Aloiai 9. Harry Grant 10. Thomas Mikaele 11. Luke Garner 12. Luciano Leilua 13. Alex Twal

14. Oliver Clark 15. Billy Walters 16. Chris Lawrence 17. Alex Seyfarth

18. Josh Reynolds 19. Matt Eisenhuth 20. Zane Musgrove 21. Michael Chee-Kam

Melbourne Storm vs. Canberra Raiders
AAMI Park, Saturday 30 May 2020
Kick Off 7:30pm


1. Ryan Papenhuyzen 2. Suliasi Vunivalu 3. Justin Olam 4. Marion Seve 5. Josh Addo-Carr 6. Cameron Munster 7. Jahrome Hughes 8. Jesse Bromwich 9. Cameron Smith 10. Nelson Asofa-Solomona 11. Felise Kaufusi 12. Kenny Bromwich 13. Dale Finucane

14. Brandon Smith 15. Tino Fa'asuamalueai 16. Christian Welch 17. Max King

18. Tom Eisenhuth 19. Brenko Lee 20. Ryley Jacks 21. Darryn Schonig

1. Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad 2. Bailey Simonsson 3. Jarrod Croker 4. Curtis Scott 5. Nick Cotric 6. Jack Wighton 7. George Williams 8. Josh Papalii 9. Josh Hodgson 10. Dunamis Lui 11. Joe Tapine 12. Elliott Whitehead 13. Corey Horsburgh

14. Siliva Havili 15. Emre Guler 16. Sia Soliola 17. Michael Oldfield

18. Jordan Rapana 19. Matt Frawley 20. Kai O'Donnell 21. Tom Starling

Penrith Panthers vs. Newcastle Knights
Campbelltown Stadium, Sunday 31 May 2020
Kick Off 4:05pm


1. Caleb Aekins 2. Josh Mansour 3. Dean Whare 4. Brent Naden 5. Brian To’o 6. Matt Burton 7. Jarome Luai 8. James Tamou 9. Api Koroisau 10. James Fisher-Harris 11. Viliame Kikau 12. Kurt Capewell 13. Isaah Yeo

14. Stephen Crichton 15. Zane Tetevano 16. Moses Leota 17. Liam Martin

18. Mitch Kenny 19. Billy Burns 20. Kaide Ellis 21. Charlie Staines

1. Tex Hoy 2. Edrick Lee 3. Enari Tuala 4. Gehamat Shibasaki 5. Hymel Hunt 6. Kurt Mann 7. Mitchell Pearce 8. David Klemmer 9. Connor Watson 10. Daniel Saifiti 11. Lachlan Fitzgibbon 12. Sione Mata'utia 13. Herman Ese'ese

14. Chris Randall 15. Jacob Saifiti 16. Tim Glasby 17. Aidan Guerra

18. Bradman Best 19. Brodie Jones 20. Mason Lino 21. Pasami Saulo

Manly Sea Eagles vs. Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs
Central Coast Stadium, Sunday 31 May 2020
Kick Off 6:30pm


1. Tom Trbojevic 2. Jorge Taufua 3. Brad Parker 4. Moses Suli 5. Reuben Garrick 6. Dylan Walker 7. Daly Cherry-Evans 8. Addin Fonua-Blake 9. Danny Levi 10. Martin Taupau 11. Joel Thompson 12. Curtis Sironen 13. Jake Trbojevic

14. Lachlan Croker 15. Corey Waddell 16. Sean Keppie 17. Taniela Paseka

18. Morgan Boyle 19. Jack Gosiewski 20. Tevita Funa 21. Brendan Elliot

1. Dallin Watene-Zelezniak 2. Nick Meaney 3. Reimis Smith 4. Will Hopoate 5. Christian Crichton 6. Lachlan Lewis 7. Jack Cogger 8. Sauaso Sue 9. Jeremy Marshall-King 10. Dylan Napa 11. Josh Jackson 12. Dean Britt 13. Adam Elliott

14. Jake Averillo 15. Renouf To'omaga 16. Raymond Faitala-Mariner 17. Ofahiki Ogden

19. Kerrod Holland 20. Aiden Tolman 21. Sione Katoa 22. Brandon Wakeham
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Big Pete

International Captain
I'm a little rusty, mods please move this to Live Discussion. 😄

The footy is back! Finally something else to look forward to other than documentaries and old television series.

Considering what they're up against, I have to hand it to V'landys to get the competition up and running. He's been transparent with the media and the fans from the start and he's followed through so far.

It remains to be seen how the switch to one referee will go, but after the referees threatened to go on strike, I have to give him credit for getting them back on board.

That's going to be one of the more interesting changes heading into the season. It was one thing to switch back to one referee, but to introduce a revolutionary rule change like the six again call for minor infringements should have major ramifications on the competition. Melbourne/Canberra in particular will make for a very interesting spectacle. Before the change, I would have considered that game a slog but now it should open up.

Brisbane/Eels - Brisbane impressed me in their opening two games with their attitude. Before the season started, I found it difficult to wrap my head around their new look spine but I saw plenty of intent with the football which was promising to see.

The Eels started slowly and they appeared to be in some trouble with the injury to Mahoney. He was their best player in the opening two rounds and the Eels are light on dummy half options. He remains a chance to play in this game, but if he doesn't it will even up the game substantially.

Cowboys/Titans - I feel sorry for Holbrook and the Gold Coast. Before a ball is even kicked, they lose their captain and their main strike weapon in Brimson. It's going to take Holbrook some time to weed out the unnecessary players and actually build a team.

It's a good opportunity for Clifford to press his claims. It's important for both him, the Cowboys and Paul Green he starts playing good footy as the Cowboys are getting a negative reputation for their player development. I would like to think Taulagi and Gilbert aren't too far from a call-up either.

Roosters/Rabbitohs - It's shaping as an important game for the Roosters. They weren't bad in their opening two weeks, they just came up against good opposition and were missing some strike. The return of Cordner and the signing of Josh Morris should go some way to rectifying that, but they cannot afford a slow start. There's definitely a touch of a premiership hangover in play, but they still have the cattle to go on a run.

The Rabbitohs have found themselves in the headlines for the wrong reasons during this Covid-19 break and it'll be interesting to see how the players will respond. We know that Walker will miss the next two matches, but Roberts is also a touch and go prospect and it remains to be seen whether Latrell is in the right head space. Before Covid-19, they were looking brittle in the forwards so they'll one of their young guns to step up.

Warriors/Dragons - When the Warriors signed Blake Green and Adam Blair, it was a good short-term deal that gave them qualities they have been sorely lacking. Unfortunately for them, the only way to entice them over was with long term contracts and now they're paying the price. With injuries stacking up and their make-shift camp in Australia, 2020 shapes up as a long year.

The Dragons actually have a very forgiving draw to open the new season with clashes against the Warriors, Bulldogs and Titans. It's a good opportunity for them to find their footing, build their combinations and gain some consistensy which was lacking in their patchy performances against the Tigers and Panthers.

Sharks/Tigers - Of all the teams that needed a break, Cronulla were well and truly on top of the list. Their injury toll was mounting, they had key players looking at other clubs and their key players weren't playing good football. Despite this, they nearly beat two of the better teams in the competition. With Moylan, Xerri, Dugan, Nikora etc. on board they have a great opportunity to regroup. One change they need to make is their 13. Williams was struggling big time in the starting role and they should give Magoulias his opportunity. Otherwise, I liked what I saw of Brailey, I think Cronulla were looking very dangerous around the middle and if Johnson can simplify his role, they could still be thereabouts.

Wests went into the break with some indifferent form, but they've gained a very good prospect in Grant. He should be able to give them some potency around the ruck which should help Doueihi's game. I'm very interested to see how Leilua responds after a very poor performance against the Knights.

Storm/Raiders - Melbourne welcome back Brandon Smith who was a big loss for them in the middle. He was such an important piece in their run towards the minor premiership last year and I expect Melbourne to trouble a lot more teams with him back. Despite that, it appeared to be business as usual for Melbourne for the break. Far too composed and professional for their opposition. They were 2/2 against opposition that usually give them a hard time, can they complete the hat-trick against Canberra who beat them in their last two games?

Canberra started the season red-hot and produced the best half of football against the poor Gold Coast Titans. It was difficult to get a good read on them afterwards due to the quality of their opposition, it seemed like against the Warriors in particular they coasted to a very comfortable win. This will be their first real test and they welcome back Rapana who decided to give Japanese Rugby a miss after all. It will be interesting to see where he fits in and whether he'll or Simonsson will come from the bench.

Panthers/Knights - Penrith will be without Cleary after Nathan accepted a two week suspension, which should see Burton called into the 6. Matt was promising on debut and looks like a quality prospect so that should soften the blow. Before the break, it appeared Penrith were back to their 2016-18 form where they would have shocking passages but then they'd put on a couple of quick tries to snare victory from the jaws of defeat.

Newcastle lost Jayden Brailey which threatened to derail their season, but they've picked up a very similar style of player in Andrew McCullough. Macca should compliment their style of play which appears to be extremely structured and based around a few pet plays. This should be a great match up just to see where these two teams are at.

Sea Eagles/Bulldogs - It appeared as if Manly picked up mostly where they left off. They were clearly missing the energy Koroisau and Fainu brought from dummy half, but they still had the tenacity we've come to expect from Hasler coached teams. They had a tough couple of assignments to start the season and by rights should be 0-2, but they came up with some fantastic try-savers, Tommy Turbo on Keary definitely needs to be added to the scrap book and shown to any up and comer about playing to the whistle.

Canterbury can't take a trick this season. They lost their star player during the rep season, CHN and Okunbor both had their contracts torn up and one of their new recruits suffered a season ending injury. Still, they didn't roll over and if a team dares to take it easy on them, they'll eat them up. Before the season was put on hold, I like what I saw of Wakeham and Averillo, I think Pay was onto something there and he needs to get behind these fresh faces. He also needs to get more out of DWZ who is capable but just has these lapses in his game.
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Big Pete

International Captain
Not far now till round one.
Well, it still feels like Round 1 to me. 😄

I'm excited to see what Fogarty can do for the Titans. With Brimson on the sidelines, the Gold Coast needed a strike player and he fits that mould. It adds an extra layer of excitement to what would otherwise be a difficult campaign for the Gold Coast.

I forgot how under-cooked the Tigers were pre-break. No Brooks, no Grant and Doueihi just thrown into the backline, they did well to go 1-1. It's going to be interesting to see how they much up against the Sharks, their middles couldn't be anymore different, especially now that Musgrove finds himself in reserves.

Very disappointed in that Dogs 17. I guess Pay views this as a very physical match-up so he's going to protect Wakeham and go with Lewis. If it wasn't clear last season, then the opening two rounds proved that Lewis is merely a stop-gap and is just out of his depth as a half.

Finally I'm keen to see how Mago and Dargan go for Souths. They were two unfortunate casualties of the Bennett-Broncos rift and after having little to play for in 2019, I'm keen to see how they handle their opportunity at Redfern.

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