What a weird and wonderful NRL competition we have in 2012. I was going to write this story last week after the Melbourne match at Brookie, but find myself filing my report a day after the Sea Eagles’ most comprehensive victory of the season – 52-14 over the hapless Roosters.
I don’t really know what to make of this Manly team in the new Geoff Toovey era. I’ve watched enthralled as they’ve played magnificently to beat top teams like the Broncos and Bulldogs… and thrilled to the way they belted Easts yesterday. But I’ve also watched displays like that against the Titans at home and the losses against Parramatta and Penrith, in absolute despair.
I know we haven’t had our top side on the park all season… but seriously, we should have at least a further six points in the bank at this stage of the season – and that could make a huge difference come September under the new McIntyre system, which sees teams placed 5 through 8 facing sudden death matches right from the start of the play-offs.
At our best with all players available, there’s no risk we can beat anyone in the Comp. - and that includes the Storm, Broncos and Bulldogs. Kieran Foran is a legend in the making… such a competitor, a great defender and a ball-playing No. 6 not afraid to take it to the line. Jamie Lyon has to be THE most consistent player in the NRL.He’s playing better than ever and never has a bad match, even when the team effort overall is below par. If T-Rex can stay fit (and stay clear of the Judiciary), he’s an absolute game-breaker up front. (Why did we ever play him as a winger?)
Brett Stewart’s getting right back to his best. The confidence he’s regained since his selection in the Blues Origin side is evident every time he takes to the paddock now wearing maroon and white. The one tackle he missed against Melbourne that resulted in a try to the Storm is about the only error he’s made in defence all year… and his attack is looking really sharp again too. (I just love seeing him loom up in the backline and throw the long pass to an unmarked winger.)
So… WHY HAVEN’T WE RE-SIGNED SNAKE AS YET? He wants a four-year deal, the club has offered him three… for God’s sake, hasn’t management learned anything from the Des Hasler debacle?
Continue Reading ...