Harper, Schuster & Olakau'atu

First Grader
None of this can occur, with our deplorably slow play-the-balls. We can't get on a roll. We can't gain momentum. We can spread the ball with time. A LOT of that stems from tackles one and two.

Our play the ball speed is disgusting. Look at a very under strength Chooks. They win by getting on a roll.

To me, that smacks of laziness, nonchalance, selfishness, fitness, lack of those 1%'ers. Again, we had too many passengers this past game. Reminded me of end of last year, start of this year, where our players seemed disinterested to get into the trenches and fight for their lives.

8 teams have played in the finals series. One was embarrassed by their performance (looked like men versus boys). I won't say who that was, I'll leave it up to people to decide. themselves.
Agreed.

Also the times when we are successful at spreading the ball on the 2nd or 3rd tackle tends to be in the last 10 mins of each half when the opposition is fatigued. Best to put it in the rack for the first 10 min a of a final.
 
Bencher
You are correct, and we acknowledge it. Both players are doing too much defensive work.
The best way to stop them - and the rest of the team - doing too much defensive work is to stop handing over possession. It's been a big problem for us for the last three or four years - a lack of respect for the ball. Honestly, sometimes it's almost as if we like defending over and over. Which is odd, because we're not very good at it.

Hold onto the footy. Score tries. Enjoy the game. Repeat.
 
Bencher
Premium Member
Tipping Comp 2021
8 teams have played in the finals series. One was embarrassed by their performance (looked like men versus boys). I won't say who that was, I'll leave it up to people to decide. themselves.

Yet, there are now six teams left all playing sudden death footy and we're still one of them.
 
Reserve Grader
Harper has been awful over the last month and his 5 mistakes in the first half killed us. After Des’s halftime blast he comes on for the second half and misses Olam with his first tackle attempt- they score- and immediately he should of been taken off. Worst individual performance in a finals game since young Steve Marvin - but he was taken off !!!
Surely he can’t get picked in the starting line up this week - but knowing Des he will. Use Suli or Walker in the centre’s. And Brad STOP falling into every tackle - it’s ridiculous and one day you will not get back up.
 
True Supporter
Staff member
Administrator
Premium Member
Tipping Comp 2021
Does anybody now how many interchanges we typically use? Given we don't seem to use 2 of our bench players until the last 5 minutes of the game, then it cant be that many. In response to @Sheikheagle post
In order working backwards from last Fridays game. Number in brackets is HIA's which you would assume gives you a free interchange as well.

5 (1), 6 (1), 6, 6 (1), 7, 8, 6 (1), 6 (1), 6 (1), 7, 7, 8, 7 (1)
 
First Grader
Premium Member
Agreed.

Also the times when we are successful at spreading the ball on the 2nd or 3rd tackle tends to be in the last 10 mins of each half when the opposition is fatigued. Best to put it in the rack for the first 10 min a of a final.
Though against Roosters there will be way more space
Storm are a different type of animal, need to play far more direct and go through them first, that's why they offer the outside, it plays into their hands....until later each half
 
The Incomparable Immortal Bob Fulton
Premium Member
Tipping Comp 2021
Harper has been awful over the last month and his 5 mistakes in the first half killed us. After Des’s halftime blast he comes on for the second half and misses Olam with his first tackle attempt- they score- and immediately he should of been taken off. Worst individual performance in a finals game since young Steve Marvin - but he was taken off !!!
Surely he can’t get picked in the starting line up this week - but knowing Des he will. Use Suli or Walker in the centre’s. And Brad STOP falling into every tackle - it’s ridiculous and one day you will not get back up.
I agree with you and feel your frustration feathered friend

Our Club has been blessed and us fans have been spoilt by grand final quality winning centres

1972 & 1973 Fulton and Branighan

1976 Fulton and Gartner

1978 Gartner and Dual Rep Knight

1987 O'connor and NZ Rep Williams

1996 Hill and NZ Rep Innes

2008 Matai and QLD origin Bell

2011 Matai and Lyon

2021 Parker and Harper
 
Reserve Grader
I'll start by saying this is all their first full NRL season, so there would obviously be an element of burnout (not used to the rigors of 25+ games of intense footy). But these three needed a rest last week. For a month now, they've really struggled.

Morgan Harper: Gets touched by the opposition, and curls up into the fetal position. When he was first with us, he had incising runs, slicing through the defensive line. His play the balls have really dropped in speed, and his hands are really starting to let him down. He just seems really flat, besides one or two moments of effort each game.

Josh Schuster: What a talent. What ex-factor. But where's that gone? It feels like he's going through the motions now. Is he playing within himself because of coaching? Is he upset playing in the backrow? Everything he does is in slow motion. He disappears for huge chunks of the game. His effort and intensity is nowhere NEAR that of how he started.

Haumole Olakau'atu. Could be ANYTHING. But he's getting a case of the Tony Williams / moses Suli this past month. His performance was stronger when he came off the bench. He still has those moments of absolute brilliance, he's an amazing player, but jeez his effort, drive and intensity has dropped off the cliff this last month.

They all have the ability, skill and class to be next level. Something has happened to all three of these players (I'm thinking burnout - seasons gone 4-5 games too long for them). This is what I'm seeing here. There isn't a chance in hell we'd beat any finals team with the current effort, passion and intensity levels. I know they have it in them to lift.
First it was Des fault for not picking the right players until injured now
Alot of the time I noticed when DCE had ball in hand, he was cutting in and out in a zig zag like fashion. Which can make it hard for a holerunner to pick the hole and time their run. I'm not putting all the ownice on DCE, but I'd like to see him straighten up at times. Sometimes simple is more effective. He has put Smole under pressure a few times in situations like these
He would be trying to make certain defenders commit and plant their feet which will help Oka run through them
 
I agree with you and feel your frustration feathered friend

Our Club has been blessed and us fans have been spoilt by grand final quality winning centres

1972 & 1973 Fulton and Branighan

1976 Fulton and Gartner

1978 Gartner and Dual Rep Knight

1987 O'connor and NZ Rep Williams

1996 Hill and NZ Rep Innes

2008 Matai and QLD origin Bell

2011 Matai and Lyon

2021 Parker and Harper
2021 is a VERY different game to all those other years. Just sayin'
 
The Incomparable Immortal Bob Fulton
Premium Member
Tipping Comp 2021
Yes, that is 1 difference. There are many more that effect the make-up of a current team.
Three factors that fck any opposition in any era

Superior Power....... Speed .........and .........Skill
 
Reserve Grader
I agree with you and feel your frustration feathered friend

Our Club has been blessed and us fans have been spoilt by grand final quality winning centres

1972 & 1973 Fulton and Branighan

1976 Fulton and Gartner

1978 Gartner and Dual Rep Knight

1987 O'connor and NZ Rep Williams

1996 Hill and NZ Rep Innes

2008 Matai and QLD origin Bell

2011 Matai and Lyon

2021 Parker and Harper
That certainly puts it in perspective!
 
Member
2021 is a different game

A faster game

Where Speed is even more dominant

Agree its a different game but more so than ant other including speed is the the ability to read and stop (tackle) the play. Currently Justin Olam is the foam centre. Hard runs at pace, and strong tackling highlights you done need to be the fastest in the field.
 
The Incomparable Immortal Bob Fulton
Premium Member
Tipping Comp 2021
Like the speed and skill of Tom, Schuster, Wasaabi and Garrick did last week?
Wasaabi contributed to 2 solo tries because his inside centre could not create any for him and the same for Garricks centre

We seem to be a one Man team when Tom is not around or shut down
 

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