Lock for the rest of 2023 and beyond

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Who should be our lock for the rest of 2023 and beyond?

  • Aloiai

    Votes: 1 2.0%
  • Jakey

    Votes: 3 6.0%
  • Bullemor

    Votes: 13 26.0%
  • Lawton

    Votes: 7 14.0%
  • Schuster

    Votes: 14 28.0%
  • Croker

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Other

    Votes: 5 10.0%
  • Fulton

    Votes: 1 2.0%
  • Burbo

    Votes: 6 12.0%

  • Total voters

Under the Sticks

The spirit of Mooney 🦅
Premium Member
So with Jake moved to front row as many called for the coaches to do, they have moved Aloiai to lock. Our recent results have shown that this part of this plan isn't working or making a signficant difference.

When you consider the other top team's locks such as Carrigan, Murray, Yeo, Finucane and Radley there are clearly two classes of players in this position. The other teams locks are mediocre like ours.

Who is going to bring a shift in our team's performance in this position which used to play such an important part of the game?

40 nil

It's only a game ...
I think a lock needs to have ball skills in order to function as a link player in the middle of the field. Jake would be much better than Aloiai who only has sufficient football smarts to be front rower (IMO). Schuster has the potential to be an elite lock. However, for a poll covering this & next year, could you please add Burbo?

Under the Sticks

The spirit of Mooney 🦅
Premium Member
I think a lock needs to have ball skills in order to function as a link player in the middle of the field. Jake would be much better than Aloiai who only has sufficient football smarts to be front rower (IMO). Schuster has the potential to be an elite lock. However, for a poll covering this & next year, could you please add Burbo?
fair call DONE!

40 nil

It's only a game ...
The best lock in the squad at present is Jake & I think the team's attack would improve is he reverts back to that position. In last night's game, I think there would have been less handling errors and breakdowns in play in the early part of the game when we tried being expansive if Jake was playing lock. If Jake is lock, we have several options for prop rotation in Sipley, Paseka, Bullemor, Keppie, Aloiai & others. If not Jake, my next choice would be Burbo - good hands, solid defender and a stronger running game than Jake.


IF - IF - Schuster can come back fitter & stronger & play more consistently, I think he’s our best lock.

His ball playing skills & experience in the second row sets him up well for the 13 jersey IMO.

Deleted member 26876

Schuster has the right attributes, or Bullymore.

But if Jake's role isn't defined better + he fails to get adequate rest during games than i'd rather just play him at lock. Especially with losing Foran, dce needs a ball-playing lock around and you can tell he is missing a link-man at times.

If Seibold is intent on Jake playing 70-80 mins at prop then it's a pointless positional change and only serves to make him take more tackles/hitups.

Jake's great, but he is like a ball of energy. I'd run of a trial of him having a 20-25 minute opening stint, a break, and then another 30 or so mins. He could provide some more oomph running the ball, and would still float around as needed in attack. Having him be a punching bag is not making use of his whole skillset and takes away his time.

Jake will play 80 mins to the best of his abilities, but if he gets stints on the bench it'll mean that the other forwards are reminded that they have to step up too.
Last edited by a moderator:


Journey Man
Honestly, some might not like but full strength this is the 17 I would have most weeks if it were possible....

FB - Tom Trbojevic
WG - Jason Saab
CE - Brad Parker
CE - Tolu Koula
WG - Reuben Garrick
FE - Lachlan Croker
HB - Daly Cherry-Evans
PR - Taniela Paseka
HK - Gordon Chan Kum Tong
PR - Jake Trbojevic
SR - Haumole Olakau'atu
SR - Ben Trbojevic
LK - Josh Schuster

Bench - Karl Lawton, Sean Keppie, Ethan Bullemor, Josh Aloiai.

  • The way Tom has been playing lately I would seriously consider swapping him with Koula. Honestly never thought I would advocate Tom moving to centre for Manly, but events lately have forced it.
  • For mine, Kelma Tuilagi's defence is not NRL standard which is why he's not in my top 17.
  • And the less we see of Cooper Johns in first grade, the better. Oh he'll give his all out there, but Cooper's all is good for NSW Cup, not the NRL.
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Journey Man
I like that team

Everyone keeps wondering what we'll do for a 5/8?? Well, we have a perfectly good one playing hooker ... and people are starting to complain about him as a hooker so why not move him? Then bring Gordon up to play dummy half with Lawton still on the bench to cover it.

And I know Shoe wants to pay 5/8, but I've always thought he would be much more suited to being a Gifty-like ball playing lock.

40 nil

It's only a game ...
Schuster is the best five eighth in our squad. His presence is needed to improve our left side attack. When he has consistent game time, he can possibly develop into a match winner. IMO, there's no point in him moving to lock until there is a better five eighth to take his place - maybe Fainu down the track?


I don't think the attack will improve simply because Schu plays 6. We could have JT out there and he would struggle off the back of what our forwards produce each week. Schuster should play 13 and learn to play tough. Leave the fancy stuff alone and run first. He has the ball playing ability to go deep into the line like Cam Murray and open up space for our halves on both sides of the ruck. If he plays 6, he is limited to creating space on the left edge only.

I'd give Weekes another shot at 6 and stick with him even when the going gets tough. The entire team didn't turn up against Penrith so I think it's harsh to only give him one shot at the position. I'm firmly of the belief that it doesn't matter who plays in that 6 jumper, we will struggle until the side starts generating ruck speed.


Reserve Grader
Croker has no idea in attack at dummy half let alone putting him at 5/8; he is a gutsy player but is one of the reasons we struggle in attack.
Would rather blood Fainu if it came to it, but only if Schuster doesn’t come good.

40 nil

It's only a game ...
So no one thinks our coaches have got it right with Aloiai at 13?

What do they know that we don’t?
I heard that Flanagan's opinion is that Jake is a lock, so maybe team selections are not unanimous. The team's performances make it obvious that Aloiai at lock is not going so well. We no longer have Walker and with Jake playing prop, we tend to lose our way in attack often. This is amplified by not having an elite dummy half (IMO).


Has to be Bullemore. I thought he should've got the position at the start of the season but was doing well as a bench impact middle and still is. But he has great attributes for a lock, very similar to Cam Murray with his leg speed and power through the ruck. He just needs to work on his fitness to play big minutes, or atleast a good amount of consecutive minutes because I think he would be the perfect fit. Would be beneficial for Aloiai as well to work from off the bench and prove himself, put a fire under his belly. I remember he was playing well early last year when Des benched him after coming back from a suspension. He doesn't deserve to be dropped just yet but he needs to be demoted to the bench, can't have someone with his stupidity and errors starts or play big minutes, has been way too costly for us this year.

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