Lehi Hopoate

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Ron E. Gibbs

First Grader
Watching the game again on replay, and man, he is impressive. Comes into the line well, moves the ball on quickly when he has to, holds it when he's a chance to stand up his man. Great hands as well. Defensively, it's incredible to see someone that young, who has now played a grand total of three NRL games, organising the defensive line the way he does - pushing defenders into place when he has to, telling others where they need to be. That's just amazing poise and confidence.
 

HoldenV8

Journey Man
I'll admit that I am torn on this one.

Hoppa Mk.VI is playing beautifully, for a rookie. But then, its why we keep the Hopoate's around the club isn't it. They're a rugby league talent production line with improvements made over time, and Lehi is the latest model.

In saying that, with players like Lehi I'm glad we do have them with us.

But to the matter at hand ... I'm torn because I do think we are a better team with Tom Trbojevic at fullback. A fit and confident Tom Trbojevic that is. When he's been that in the past 3 years he's shown us that he still has some of that 2021-like form in him.

Right now I know everyone seems to want to drop Garrick when Turbo comes back in a few weeks because they think he's flopping at centre, especially defensively. However, of our current centres and wingers, his tackle efficiency is actually the best of the lot, its just that our right edge faces a lot more ball going down that side. And right know Reubs seems to be the favourite target of fan venom whenever a try is scored down our right edge.

But would it interest anyone to know that our left edge actually has less tackle efficiency than our right?? Saab and Garrick are making, collectively, around 84% of their tackles. Koula and Talau are down at about 76% collectively. Between them, Saab and Garrick have made 253 tackles (200 for Reubs) and missed 42. Talau and Koula have made 172 tackles (107 for Koula) and missed 51.

Is Reubs really going as bad as some would like to think?? I don't think he is.

And therein lays the problem ... who misses out when Turbo returns?? At this stage I think despite how he's going and despite Reubs being the current whipping boy, its going to be young Hopoate.
 

Dion Johnson

Bencher
Premium Member
Tipping Member
I'll admit that I am torn on this one.

Hoppa Mk.VI is playing beautifully, for a rookie. But then, its why we keep the Hopoate's around the club isn't it. They're a rugby league talent production line with improvements made over time, and Lehi is the latest model.

In saying that, with players like Lehi I'm glad we do have them with us.

But to the matter at hand ... I'm torn because I do think we are a better team with Tom Trbojevic at fullback. A fit and confident Tom Trbojevic that is. When he's been that in the past 3 years he's shown us that he still has some of that 2021-like form in him.

Right now I know everyone seems to want to drop Garrick when Turbo comes back in a few weeks because they think he's flopping at centre, especially defensively. However, of our current centres and wingers, his tackle efficiency is actually the best of the lot, its just that our right edge faces a lot more ball going down that side. And right know Reubs seems to be the favourite target of fan venom whenever a try is scored down our right edge.

But would it interest anyone to know that our left edge actually has less tackle efficiency than our right?? Saab and Garrick are making, collectively, around 84% of their tackles. Koula and Talau are down at about 76% collectively. Between them, Saab and Garrick have made 253 tackles (200 for Reubs) and missed 42. Talau and Koula have made 172 tackles (107 for Koula) and missed 51.

Is Reubs really going as bad as some would like to think?? I don't think he is.

And therein lays the problem ... who misses out when Turbo returns?? At this stage I think despite how he's going and despite Reubs being the current whipping boy, its going to be young Hopoate.
If it was the 2021 version of Turbo there would be no conversation, his form that year was freakishly good, the 2024 version of Turbo however has the conversation going, particularly Turbos defence at the back, it was poor by his standards this season.

The Garrick tackle efficiency for me is not the question it’s his defensive reads and decision making without the ball that has been the concern at centre, I have listened to a handful of podcasts and the shared sentiment is Garricks form at centre, particularly his defence, people are under the view of why he is still selected there.

Garrick was a very good left winger who finished off the plays well, for me that’s where he should play, the few games Ben T has played there the defensive line has been better on the right edge.
 

MW66

Reserve Grader
So accomplished for a 19 year old and the Dragons targeted him in the 2nd half. How he didn't get at least one penalty for high shots coming off our line was beyond me. Just glides, has good hands and evasive skills. "Gonna be a good un".
 

Tragic Eagle

Tragic
Premium Member
Tipping Member
I keep reading about the hard question. It isn't a hard question it is a easy solution. Young Lehi is a first grader and his defence and attack is excellent. Tom's last line of defence hasn't been good this season and I expect that a psychological thing as a result of him being subconsciously concerned about being injured again. The change of position is not really about less contact and avoiding injury its about taking pressure off Turbo. It makes perfect sense to me.
 

Bearfax

Grizzly old fart
Does tackle efficiency allow for all the times a player rushes in, and takes no-one at all?


The measures seem to be 'missed tackles' and 'ineffective tackles'. May fall into one of those categories. Manly's defense was again problematic against St George. Stats indicate Manly had 38 missed tackles to St George's 39. But Manly had a whopping 40 ineffective tackles to St George's 5. An issue unresolved. Fortunate that the attack is on song.
 

Ron E. Gibbs

First Grader
The measures seem to be 'missed tackles' and 'ineffective tackles'. May fall into one of those categories. Manly's defense was again problematic against St George. Stats indicate Manly had 38 missed tackles to St George's 39. But Manly had a whopping 40 ineffective tackles to St George's 5. An issue unresolved. Fortunate that the attack is on song.
Those stats certainly back up the "eye test".

I wonder how many of those ineffective tackles were in the first half. I said during the game that our first-up contact in defence was atrocious, with defenders falling off tackles and allowing a mountain of offloads. Weirdly, the only player putting his shoulder into it in the first half was Luke Brooks.
 

Eagle 1

First Grader
I'll admit that I am torn on this one.

Hoppa Mk.VI is playing beautifully, for a rookie. But then, its why we keep the Hopoate's around the club isn't it. They're a rugby league talent production line with improvements made over time, and Lehi is the latest model.

In saying that, with players like Lehi I'm glad we do have them with us.

But to the matter at hand ... I'm torn because I do think we are a better team with Tom Trbojevic at fullback. A fit and confident Tom Trbojevic that is. When he's been that in the past 3 years he's shown us that he still has some of that 2021-like form in him.

Right now I know everyone seems to want to drop Garrick when Turbo comes back in a few weeks because they think he's flopping at centre, especially defensively. However, of our current centres and wingers, his tackle efficiency is actually the best of the lot, its just that our right edge faces a lot more ball going down that side. And right know Reubs seems to be the favourite target of fan venom whenever a try is scored down our right edge.

But would it interest anyone to know that our left edge actually has less tackle efficiency than our right?? Saab and Garrick are making, collectively, around 84% of their tackles. Koula and Talau are down at about 76% collectively. Between them, Saab and Garrick have made 253 tackles (200 for Reubs) and missed 42. Talau and Koula have made 172 tackles (107 for Koula) and missed 51.

Is Reubs really going as bad as some would like to think?? I don't think he is.

And therein lays the problem ... who misses out when Turbo returns?? At this stage I think despite how he's going and despite Reubs being the current whipping boy, its going to be young Hopoate.
Torn as well, have always been firmly in the Turbo for fullback camp, but geez.. it's such a huge comfort zone for us, having Lehi up our sleeve if Tom goes down again, it's like we can all breath again.
 

Ron E. Gibbs

First Grader
How long before the Roosters or Parra buy him?

Hoppa Snr will take the $$.
I mean, I get the skepticism, but the future of any player is never 100% clear, so why not just enjoy watching a great local junior playing for Manly and hope that we get to keep watching him?

I know we're used to disappointment, but I don't think we need to default to the position of "We never get to have nice things" just yet. If the club is smart (and yes, that is definitely up for debate), they will make him a priority. The fact our coach is even considering shifting Tommy from fullback shows how highly they must rate Lehi.
 

Rocky

Bencher
How long before the Roosters or Parra buy him?

Hoppa Snr will take the $$.
I mean did Manly actually want to keep any of the others? Will was obviously the best but that was a big contract he got.

People can criticise Manly for not getting a big-name recruit but it's because they have kept most if not all of the players they have wanted to in recent memory.

I doubt the club will let Tom's replacement slip away.
 

Sheikheagle

First Grader
Tipping Member
It would have to be really big, in an interview he did on Manly Media, said he dreamt of playing at Brookie used to go to the school close by and watch the team train, and really gets on with all the players and loves Manly.

Didn’t his brothers say the same thing.
 

Dion Johnson

Bencher
Premium Member
Tipping Member
How long before the Roosters or Parra buy him?

Hoppa Snr will take the $$.
If they pay him what he is worth it shouldn’t be an issue, the club has forked out the right dollars to keep others, why wouldn’t they do the same in this situation?
 

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