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Full-backs on trial for Test spot

Discussion in 'Rugby League Forum' started by clontaago, Apr 4, 2008.

  1. clontaago

    clontaago Well-Known Member

    +121 / 0
    TONIGHT's Melbourne v Brisbane showdown is a virtual selection trial between Karmichael Hunt and Billy Slater for the full-back's jersey in May's Centenary Test.

    The Australian understands that selectors have met already to discuss the full-back position because of the talent available in the competition.

    Manly's Brett Stewart is the incumbent having replaced the injured Hunt in last October's 58-0 drubbing of New Zealand in Wellington. But until his hat-trick of tries against the Warriors on Monday night, Stewart had not fully warmed-up for season 2008.

    The Cowboys' Matt Bowen, who is a late withdrawal against Parramatta on Saturday night, is thought to be too small to take on the might of the Kiwis forwards, while former Australia full-back Anthony Minichiello (Roosters) is yet to reproduce his best form.

    The race is between Hunt and Slater with their respective performances tonight (Friday) going a long way to helping selectors decide who plays against New Zealand on May 9 at the SCG.

    Hunt and Brisbane captain Darren Lockyer are back for the match against Melbourne, although their return has been offset by news Justin Hodges (hamstring) is in doubt, while hooker PJ Marsh (ribs) is out.

    Marsh, who fought his way back from a broken neck to re-establish himself as one of the game's best dummy halves, has been grounded this week by, of all things, a sneeze.

    The rugged utility is still awaiting the results of scans on his ribs to determine the extent of the damage caused by the faux pas, which occurred as he was driving to Brisbane's Red Hill training base on Monday.

    A crack was discovered in the side of his ribs on Monday evening after a sneeze caused searing pain.

    "The doctors said there was obviously something there and just that action of sneezing obviously aggravated it," Marsh said.

    In his first year at the Broncos, the former Parramatta and Warriors rake has been in sensational touch, proving with his work around the rucks that he is more than capable of filling the hooker-utility role vacated by Shaun Berrigan.
  2. The Gronk

    The Gronk Well-Known Member

    +37 / 0
    just paper talk

    If Slater is the Aus fullback when he is number 3 choice for qld then I too am a former trackwork jockey. 
  3. Garts

    Garts Well-Known Member

    +667 / 18
    Does anyone on here rate Hunt as highly as some seem too?  I think he is a good player but do not rate him as high as Stewart or Mini.  Just seems the media seem to cream themselves over him, I do not see the fuss.
  4. fLIP

    fLIP UFO Hunter

    +784 / 15
    I agree with you Garts. Hunt is one of the most over-rated in the NRL imo.

    Putting bias aside, from what I have seen this year I can see it going back too Mini. It may have taken him 2 build up games before the freak got his hat-trick so on the form we know he can produce stewart is a close second at this point.
  5. Dan

    Dan Administrator Staff Member Administrator 2016 Tipping Competitor

    Amsterdam, The Netherlands
    +5,437 / 74
    I think Mini will be the selection too. He is probably one of the best overall fullbacks to play the game.

    His size and strength added to his pace and positional play are outstanding and he is slowly getting back to his best.

    I don't think Slater is as good as they say and I don't think he will cut anymore.

    Hunt is by far one of the most over-rated players in the comp. Whilst in attack he has flair especially with Lockyer anywhere near him, his defense is questionable as is his ability under a high ball under pressure.

    Stewart and Mini should be looking for the spot and I think Stewart has shown enough to allow him to keep the spot too!
  6. Zep

    Zep Active Member

    +8 / 0
    i also agree with Garts...

    it comes down to Stewart or Mini for me.
  7. Fluffy

    Fluffy Well-Known Member

    +3,461 / 128
    I am in the mini/stewart camp as well. How they can whinge about stewy's form and ingore hunt being injured is beyond me. I rate Hunt but not as much as the paper talk. In my eyes there is a big gap between 3rd and 4th

  8. Canteen Worker

    Canteen Worker Well-Known Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

    +212 / 5
    Patten was the best fullback on Friday night. Mini was okay though dropped a sitter. His back still doesn't look 100%. Slater was good though the way Gus talks him up, you would think they are engaged. Hunt didn't do poorly.

    Patten looked the goods in a badly beaten side and looked class.
  9. Zep

    Zep Active Member

    +8 / 0
    if stewart is the NSW fullback they should play at brooky to guarantee atleast one try :D

    Stewart is the incumbent and unless he has a bad run of form he should be the test fullback..
  10. Kiwi Eagle

    Kiwi Eagle Moderator Staff Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

    +2,424 / 31
    As much as i hate to admit it, Slater was very impressive last night

    Although i do see Stewart set up that try assist they raved on about most weeks
  11. Nutzcraw

    Nutzcraw Active Member

    +4 / 0
    Slater is he best fullback so far this year.

    Minichello second.

    Patten third.

    Stewart has been poor until the warriors game. If he keeps that up he'll be right back in calculations
  12. SilentBob

    SilentBob Well-Known Member

    +3 / 0
    Selectors have a thing for choosing incumbents, Stewart should be the man if he holds the form he found last week.
  13. Dan

    Dan Administrator Staff Member Administrator 2016 Tipping Competitor

    Amsterdam, The Netherlands
    +5,437 / 74
    I have been impressed with patten all year but mainly in attack.

    With a more soli defensive team around him he would go better
  14. Ryan

    Ryan Well-Known Member

    +5,704 / 264
    NSW Team:-

    01. Anthony Minichello
    02. Jarred Hayne
    03. Jamie Lyon
    04. Mark Gasnier
    05. Eric Grothe
    06. Greg Bird
    07. Peter Wallace
    08. Willie Mason
    09. Danny Buderus
    10. Luke Bailey
    11. Nathan Hindmarsh
    12. Ryan Hoffman
    13. Luke O'Donnell

    14. Kurt Gidley
    15. Brent Kite
    16. Brett White
    17. Anthony Watmough


    01. Karmichael Hunt
    02. Israel Falou
    03. Justin Hodges
    04. Mark Gasnier
    05. Greg Inglis
    06. Darren Lockyer
    07. Johnathan Thurston
    08. Willie Mason
    09. Cameron Smith
    10. Petero Civeneceva
    11. Ryan Hoffman
    12. Dallas Johnson
    13. Luke O'Donnell

    14. Kurt Gidley
    15. Steve Price
    16. Brent Kite
    17. Michael Crocker
  15. willstyles

    willstyles Active Member

    +4 / 0
    On form Anasta would be one of the first blokes picked for NSW.

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