Round twenty five selections

Canberra Raiders vs Sydney Roosters – Thursday night – BB Print Stadium (Mackay)

There's plenty to play for here and, potentially, nothing to play for at all. The Raiders are currently ninth, and a win put them into eighth least temporarily. Technically the Raiders could lose this game and still make the top eight, but it's so unlikely it's easier to assume they need to win to keep their season alive. The Chooks, currently sixth, can force their way back into the top least temporarily. To stay there, they would need the two teams above them to lose - entirely possible but again not likely. The Raiders kept their season alive with a come from behind win over the Warriors last week, while the Chooks back up from a bruising contest with their oldest rival. The Roosters lost another key player (Manu) in that game after a much-discussed incident, but they do have a bunch of key players returning on Thursday night (Waerea-Hargreaves, Crichton, Morris, Keighran and Ikavalu). Walker moves to the bench, and is likely to create plenty of energy and creativity when he does take to the field. These sides met in round 12 where the Roosters won comfortably. This won't be comfortable, but the Raiders have played top eight sides 11 times this season and lost seven. The four wins were against the Sharks (twice), the Eels during their form slump, and the Sea Eagles when their stars weren't available.

Verdict – Roosters by 4

Result – Roosters 40 defeated Raiders 16

Cronulla Sharks vs Melbourne Storm – Friday night – Cbus Super Stadium

A win for the Sharks and they make the top eight. They could sneak in with a loss, but they'd love to avoid the nail-biting if they can. The Storm secure the minor premiership with a win - it's a nice trophy but the coach has made it clear he won't leave everything on the park trying to secure it. As such, the Storm are resting a whole bunch of players this week (Munster, Welch, Kaufusi, Addo-Carr, J Bromwich, K Bromwich, R Smith and Eisenhuth). Notably, Finucane and Asofa-Solomona return. The Storm typically bounce back well from a loss - perhaps because their coach puts a rocket up them, and perhaps because they are proper professionals. They wouldn't want to lose back to back games heading into a finals series, but this won't be easy. As for the Sharks, they have everything to play for and their opponent is resting six internationals. The Sharks are rank outsiders and probably should be, but I'll tip them here.

Verdict – Sharks by 2

Result – Storm 28 defeated Sharks 16

Parramatta Eels vs Penrith Panthers – Friday night – Cbus Super Stadium

The Eels are resting a bunch of players on Friday night, while the Panthers have named their best seventeen. Clearly the Eels don't think a top four finish is important. They were tremendous against the Storm last week (and beat them twice this season), but without Gutherson, Moses, Paulo, Blake and Niukore this is virtually a different team. Expect the Panthers to put a gap on their rivals in the first 60 minutes, then put some key players on ice in readiness for next week.

Verdict – Panthers by 26

Result – Panthers 40 defeated Eels 6

Brisbane Broncos vs Newcastle Knights – Saturday afternoon – Suncorp Stadium

The Knights are in seventh place on the ladder and will stay there regardless of the outcome on Saturday night. The Broncos are way down in 15th, but could shuffle above the Cowboys with a win here. That's some motivation, but the bigger motivation should be to give one of their best a win in their final game for the club. Alex Glenn deserves it. Over to you Broncos. 

Full disclosure: I don't bet a lot on the football (hardly at all to be honest), but I'll make an exception in this case because I'm dumbfounded that the Broncos are paying $2.60. I'm on. Gamble responsibly.

Verdict – Broncos by 4

Result – Broncos 35 defeated Knights 22

North Queensland Cowboys vs Manly Sea Eagles – Saturday night – Queensland Country Bank Stadium

The Sea Eagles can cement a top four finish with a win, although they may not even have to should the Eels and Roosters lose. Manly will know before kick-off, so that could change things considerably here. Watch for late team changes if Des Hasler feels the need to rest a few. The Cowboys don't have a lot to play for here, but they are at home and would want to give a good account of themselves to the rusted on fans at the ground. I'm with Manly, but this could be one of those sneaky results that surprises a few.

Further disclosure: I'll be ducking up the highway to see this game in the flesh on Saturday night. I'm yet to see the new stadium up there, and I thought I should make an effort to get out and do a few things while we aren't locked down.

Verdict – Sea Eagles by 4

Result – Sea Eagles 46 defeated Cowboys 18

South Sydney Rabbitohs vs St George Illawarra Dragons – Saturday night – Sunshine Coast Stadium

The Dragons are going so poorly they lost last week to a side that had lost ten games in a row. They haven't won since the sausage sizzle but the Bunnies are giving them every hope in this. Wayne Bennett has pulled nine of his best out of the team and had Mitchell pulled on his behalf. Given all that, I'm actually tipping the Dragons who can (potentially) shuffle themselves from 12th to 11th. It's not much of a carrot, but this is virtually a reserve grade opponent on Saturday night. Now watch Benji Marshall pull out a game for the ages and prove me wrong.

Verdict – Dragons by 1

Result – Rabbitohs 20 defeated Dragons 16

Gold Coast Titans vs New Zealand Warriors – Sunday afternoon – Cbus Super Stadium

The Titans can still make the top eight, but they'll need to win this and have other results go their way. Those other results will happen before this game, so they will know their fate before they take to the field. If a finals slot is still on the table, they may have to win by a margin to overtake the Sharks anyway. We will know on Sunday. The Warriors season is officially over after the loss to the Raiders, but what a team they have been. I imagine they will be keen to get home (although home is locked down at the perhaps not). What I am excepting on Sunday afternoon is a lot of points - this game just screams 46-32 scoreline or similar does it not?. Take note that Anthony Don has been named on an extended bench. I doubt he will play, but he's a popular Titan and deserves a fitting send-off.

Verdict – Titans by 8

Result – Titans 44 defeated Warriors 0

Wests Tigers vs Canterbury Bulldogs – Sunday afternoon – Moreton Daily Stadium (Redcliffe)

The Tigers will be disappointed they weren't able to finish in 9th position this season...which is where they usually finish. Oh well, maybe they'll just miss the top eight next season. As for the Bulldogs...the less we say the better. As for fans of both of luck next season.

Verdict – Tigers by 2

Result – Bulldogs 38 defeated Tigers 0

Wally Lewis - round twenty five selections (in bold)

Note: tips from Wally will be published on Wednesday night or Thursday morning

  • Raiders vs ROOSTERS
  • Sharks vs STORM
  • Eels vs PANTHERS
  • Broncos vs KNIGHTS
  • Cowboys vs SEA EAGLES
  • RABBITOHS vs Dragons
  • TITANS vs Warriors
  • TIGERS vs Bulldogs


The Thinker's picture

Greetings football fans

I have updated the NRL ladder and the tipping comp after round 24. Congrats to Scott M, Teraflare, Bulga, Mary S and Islander - our top scorers for the round with 7 from 8. 

A special shout out to Taka - our only tipster that picked the Eels to beat the Storm. That was (if you can believe the odds-makers) the biggest upset of the season by a long way. 

If anyone notices any results that need my attention just let me know.

I will have my previews and selections published by tomorrow.

All the best

The Thinker

Buzz105's picture

If your Melbourne, would you rather play Souths in week 1 of the finals or Manly.

I think I'd give up the minor premiership, play souths and then be one win away from another GF appearance

newbie from perth's picture

"Dia duit gach duine" i dteanga ní mo theanga féin,

Apologies to all but I’m still a little angry. Yeah, the Bunnies racked up a very comprehensive 54-12 demolition against the Roosters last week and deservedly so. Unfortunately, their dominant display was overshadowed (in my mind anyway) by that deplorable act from Mitchell on Joey Manu. Not only was the hit late, but it was high, reckless and downright dangerous. I’ve had enough of making excuses for Latrell. I’m done with him now. Brain snap or not, great player or not, I’ll never forgive him for what he did last week 😣.

How he wasn’t sent off beggars belief. I’d be very surprised if Souths can win the GF now without him. The “dream result” seems like mere whimsy in my mind. Like I said last week, it was a massive win for the Bunnies but at what cost? Well done Latrell 🤡.

The Storm, Panthers and Manly shouldn’t be too worried about Souths’ demolition of the Roosters though. They beat a Roosters side missing so many regulars (now we can add Joey Manu to that list) and filled with guys who are lacking first grade experience. “Move along, nothing to see here.”

Let’s do this thing …

Raiders vs. Roosters 55-45 @ Mackay
Ladder Position = Roosters
Bookies Favourite = Roosters

After the Raiders’ first half effort against the Warriors last week I thought they were gone. They were 16-6 behind going into the sheds and given the Warriors effort and the Raiders’ well documented second half “fade-outs”, things weren’t looking all that good. But to their credit (and my surprise) they put on 22 second half points, kept the Warriors scoreless and eventually ran out deserved 28-16 winners. Their second half comeback was outstanding it must be said. I’m sure with just 2 minutes to go and locked at 16-all they were thinking of a field goal but instead they ran it on the last and Rapana scores. I like it when sides take a chance like that. And to top things off, Hudson Young scores at the death to put the icing on the cake.

Possession - 51%
Completion Rate - 75% (33/44)
Tackle Breaks - 44
Missed Tackles - 27
Ineffective Tackles - 8
Errors - 14
Penalties Conceded - 4

It was a pretty average effort from the Roosters last week against the Rabbitohs. It was expected though given the number of players they have missing (injuries and suspensions etc) and especially the red-hot form the Rabbitohs are currently enjoying. At half-time with the Roosters down 24-6 it wasn’t looking good. In the second half the Rabbitohs gave the Roosters a football lesson and the Roosters got absolutely smacked 54-12. In typical Roosters fashion they never stopped having a crack and at one stage were only trailing 24-12. Unfortunately, after “Rover” put Joey Manu out of action in the 57th minute, it all fell to pieces for the Chooks. The Rabbitohs scored 5 tries in 18 minutes to completely and utterly vanquish the Roosters. As always, I was pretty proud of the boys. There’s always next year 😁.

Possession - 40%
Completion Rate - 74% (23/31)
Line Breaks - 1
Tackle Breaks - 19
Forced Drop Outs - 0
Missed Tackles - 51 (Yikes!)
Ineffective Tackles - 26
Errors - 11
Penalties Conceded - 7

Verdict: Roosters. Begurk! 🐔 Begurk! 🐔

Sharks vs. Storm 35-65 @ Cbus
Ladder Position = Storm
Bookies Favourite = Storm

The Sharks exchanged tries tit-for-tat with the Broncos last week but Tracy’s 34’ try was the difference as the Sharks headed into half-time with an 18-10 break. The Sharks scored 5 minutes into the second half but the Broncos got one 5 minutes after that and that was where the points stopped for both sides. Sharks led by 8 at half-time and they ended up winning by 8 at full-time (24-16). Just thought the Sharks should’ve done a little better with the Broncos having a player sent to the bin in each half. Well they did score a try when Flegler was off but other than that, not much. The Sharks fought hard (their scramble and goal-line defence) to keep the Broncos out but their exhibition was far from encouraging or assured. Just sayin’.

Possession - 50%
Completion Rate - 76% (29/38)
Line Breaks - 5
Tackle Breaks - 30
Missed Tackles - 28
Ineffective Tackles - 17
Errors - 11
Penalties Conceded - 2

The Storm had a battle on their hands in the first half last week when a rejuvenated Eels held them to 10-all heading into the half-time break. Couldn’t quite believe what I was seeing but the Storm went scoreless in the second half whereas the Eels scored another 12 and at fulltime the Storm’s attempt to “break the record” came crashing down as they lost 22-10. At least my Mighty 1975 Roosters team’s record wasn’t beaten. I can live with it being equalled though 🤪. In the end the Storm were just not good enough on the night. The Eels did their homework and beat the Storm at their own game. Pretty sure Bellyache will change a few things up now as I can’t see the Storm getting sucked in like that again.

Possession - 49%
Completion Rate - 69% (29/42)
Line Breaks - 7
Tackle Breaks - 29
Missed Tackles - 34
Ineffective Tackles - 9
Errors - 12
Penalties Conceded - 6

Verdict: Even if they rest players, the Storm should still win this (maybe).

Eels vs. Panthers 30-70 @ Cbus
Ladder Position = Panthers
Bookies Favourite = Panthers

I thought the Eels’ first half effort last week against the Storm was excellent. Even though they went into the sheds all wrapped up at 10-10, I didn’t expect to witness what transpired in the second half. The Eels kept the Storm scoreless, scored another 12 points themselves and earned a well-deserved (and surprising) 22-10 win over the best side in the competition. Naice! The Eels just seemed to be focussed from the get-go and to their credit, they believed they could win it and played accordingly. They beat the Storm at their own game. They suffocated the Storm in the second half and kept them scoreless even though the Storm had quite a few chances. I must admit it was a very impressive effort from the Eels and maybe, just maybe, their return to some sort of form might be just what’s needed come finals.

Possession - 51%
Completion Rate - 90% (37/41)
Line Breaks - 4
Tackle Breaks - 34
Kicking Metres - 724
Bombs - 9
Missed Tackles - 29
Ineffective Tackles - 18
Errors - 11
Penalties Conceded - 3

Another impressive effort from the Panthers last week. Went about their job in a professional and clinical manner and did what good teams do. Great contributions from Kikau, To’o, Luai and Leota.

Possession - 51%
Completion Rate - 63% (27/43)
Line Breaks - 7
Tackle Breaks - 46
Missed Tackles - 29
Ineffective Tackles - 16
Errors - 17
Penalties Conceded - 2
Ruck Infringements - 4

Verdict: Game of the round obviously. While the Eels’ effort was very impressive last week, just got a feeling the Panthers will get up here.

Broncos vs. Knights 50-50 @ Suncorp
Ladder Position = Knights
Bookies Favourite = Knights

It was tit-for-tat try scoring in the first half last week when the Broncos were up against the Sharks. Unfortunately for the Broncos, the Sharks got an extra try at the 34’ mark (and a penalty goal on 40 minutes) and the Broncos were trailing 18-10 at the break. The Sharks scored 5 minutes into the second half but the Broncos got one 5 minutes after that and that was where the points stopped for both sides. The Broncos were a chance when Niu scored at the 50’ mark but they just couldn’t get past the Sharks defence and they ended up losing 24-16. The Broncos produced plenty of opportunities but it didn’t translate into points. They did look like they were playing with some confidence so Broncos’ fans should look forward to an improved effort next year for sure. The sin-binning of Flegler after 23 minutes (cost them a try one minute later) and Piakura after 64 minutes may not have helped their cause. Even so, the Sharks weren’t able to finish off the Broncos so well done to the Broncos for hanging in there when they were twice down to 12 men. "The effort was there but not quite there with our discipline," Brisbane coach Kevin Walters said.

Possession - 50%
Completion Rate - 75% (27/36)
Line Breaks - 7
Tackle Breaks - 28
Missed Tackles - 30
Ineffective Tackles - 16
Errors - 11
Penalties Conceded - 6

The Knights’ first half last week against the Titans wasn’t as smooth as they would’ve liked but they fought back from the pressure the Titans put on them and at the break they were only trailing 12-6. A better effort in the second 40 where they drew level and at 14-all and just a couple of minutes to go, both sides were looking for the “killer” field goal. After the failed attempt from the Titans, the Knights worked their way towards their own end and a cool Mitchell Pearce slotted it over the black dot and the Knights snuck home in a 15-14 thriller. Great kicking game from Pearce (including a 40/20) as well as scoring a try.

Possession - 45%
Completion Rate - 75% (30/40)
Tackle Breaks - 22
Missed Tackles - 28
Ineffective Tackles - 14
Errors - 11
Penalties Conceded - 4

Verdict: Seriously, this is a tough one for me. Might give the Broncos the nod here.

Cowboys vs. Manly 25-75 @ Townsville
Ladder Position = Manly
Bookies Favourite = Manly

The Cowboys were the first to score last week against the Dragons but let in 4 Dragons’ tries and heading into the sheds they were down 20-10. The Cowboys came out in the second half a different side. The put on 5 tries to one and earned themselves a well-deserved 38-26 win. The Dragons came back at them and there was only 6 points in it with a minute to go but Murray Tualagi and Hamisao Tabuai-Fidow combined to get a length of the field try put the nail in the Dragons’ coffin. A great effort coming from 10 points down at half-time to end up winning by 12. Good to see them back in the winners’ circle and snap their 10-game losing streak. Tom Dearden had a cracker and by all accounts it was his best for the Cowboys so far.

Possession - 49%
Completion Rate - 74% (28/38)
Line Breaks - 8
Tackle Breaks - 34
Missed Tackles - 46
Ineffective Tackles - 19
Errors - 12
Penalties Conceded - 5

Things were looking a bit shaky for Manly last week when the Bulldogs led them 12-10 at the half-time break. It took them a while to get going but they eventually scored enough tries to run out 36-18 winners. Aside from Turbo’s try 3 minutes into the second half (a bit touch and go that one?), Manly ran in 3 tries in 13 minutes to snuff out any hope the Bulldogs may have had. Maybe the Sea Eagles were holding themselves back getting ready for the finals (or maybe not) but I just thought they would’ve done a little bit more. Then again, the Bulldogs were pretty good on the day. In the end though, Manly got the win and that’s all that matters. They did well to get past their clunky first half effort so credit where credit’s due. "We recognise we were down in a few areas but we will make sure when the big games come around that we are ready to go," coach Des Hasler said.

Possession - 61%
Completion Rate - 73% (33/45)
Tackle Breaks - 37
Missed Tackles - 12
Ineffective Tackles - 13
Errors - 11
Penalties Conceded - 4

Verdict: I think Manly’s scare last week was just what they needed. They should win this.

Rabbitohs vs. Dragons 70-30 @ Sunshine Coast
Ladder Position = Rabbitohs
Bookies Favourite = Rabbitohs

The Rabbitohs put on a clinic last week against the Roosters. Their first half was very good (24-6) but their second half was even better. They were simply outstanding and too hot for the Roosters to handle. They finished off in awesome style scoring 5 tries in 18 minutes to give the Roosters an absolute flogging, winning 54-12 at the end. Walker, Cook, Reynolds and Marshall all had a field day. Unfortunately, the actions of “Rover” took all that gloss away from those fellas. Taking away Mitchell’s act of thuggery, and it’s hard to admit, but I have to say he had a great game too. At the end of the day Souths were just too good and the result was well deserved. It will be interesting to see how they go in the finals (against stiffer competition) without Latrell. Watch this space 🤔.

Possession - 60%
Completion Rate - 84% (38/45)
Line Breaks - 11
Tackle Breaks - 51
Forced Drop Outs - 3
Missed Tackles - 19
Ineffective Tackles - 13
Errors - 8
Penalties Conceded - 2

The Dragons were on top in the first half last week against the Cowboys. They scored 4 tries to 2 and heading into the sheds they were leading 20-10. Unfortunately, they let 5 tries in while only scoring the one themselves and ended up losing 38-26. The game was there for the taking but they couldn’t find a way to keep the Cowboys away from the line. They were a chance when they scored at the 67’ mark but Hamisao Tabuai-Fidow put the nail in the coffin a minute from time. They did have a crack and their young guys did well. "They were terrific, you see their natural ability and today will help them long term," said Dragons coach Anthony Griffin. "They showed some inexperience, they came up with some plays that weren't the right plays at the right time but you also saw their natural ability and their brilliance. As much as that hurts today it's a great experience for them and they'll learn from that."

Possession - 51%
Completion Rate - 68% (25/37)
Line Breaks - 6
Tackle Breaks - 46
Missed Tackles - 34
Ineffective Tackles - 18
Errors - 13
Penalties Conceded - 4

Verdict: Originally I was gonna say that this would be an easy win to the Rabbitohs but then I saw the team lists and well, I’m changing my mind. Dragons for me.

Titans vs. Warriors 65-35 @ Cbus
Ladder Position = Titans
Bookies Favourite = Titans

The Titans started the better last week against the Knights and scored their first try after 4 minutes. They were looking assured in their game and things were made a lot easier for them due to some silly errors from the Knights. After David Fifita scored that insane barnstorming try (pushing past some Knights defenders as well as dragging some with him) the Titans went into the break leading 12-6. It was a tough tussle in the second half and with minutes to go Patrick Herbert had a crack at a field goal but it went wide and the Knights were able to march the ball to the other end and get the field goal to get over the Titans in a 15-14 heartbreaker. Both sides were pretty evenly matched but the luck went against the Titans on this occasion. They could’ve won last week but it wasn’t to be.

Possession - 54%
Completion Rate - 86% (32/37)
Line Breaks - 5
Tackle Breaks - 28
Average Set Distance - 50.4m
Missed Tackles - 22
Ineffective Tackles - 12
Errors - 5
Penalties Conceded - 4

The Warriors had a great first half last week against the Raiders. They scored in the first set and were looking confident running with the ball. They were 16 points up after 25 minutes and at half-time they led the Raiders 16-6. Their second half was the complete opposite. They had 22 points put past them (28 unanswered for the match) and just seemed to fade away under the Raiders’ pressure. I just got the feeling that mentally (Covid and lockdown bubbles etc) they’ve had enough and it took its toll. The second half saw them make some crucial errors which ultimately lost them the game. I’m sure they’ll feel better once they get back home (hopefully).

Possession - 49%
Completion Rate - 76% (28/37)
Tackle Breaks - 27
Missed Tackles - 44
Ineffective Tackles - 11
Errors - 10
Penalties Conceded - 7

Verdict: As much as I like the Warriors, I just get the feeling they’ve had enough. Titans for me.

Tigers vs. Bulldogs 60-40 @ Redcliffe
Ladder Position = Tigers
Bookies Favourite = Tigers

The Tigers were right in the mix (sorta) in the first half last week against the Panthers. On reflection and after watching Pangai Junior dragging Tigers along with him on his way to the try line, I suppose you’d have to admit that things were going to change in the second half. And change they did. The Tigers simply had no answer to the Panthers’ professionalism (and Cleary’s kicking game) and they allowed their opposition to run in 2 tries in 6 minutes shortly after the start of the second half and their day was basically done and dusted. Mind you, the Tigers’ effort was OK. They showed some good moments and some resolve. Obviously, they just couldn’t match the Panthers for class but a much better display last week than some of their recent outings. Yeah, a much better effort but they still went down 30-16. "We had a 10-minute period after half time that hurt us ... to see the boys fight and compete is something we need to make sure we take forward," Tigers coach Michael Maguire said.

Possession - 49%
Completion Rate - 82% (31/38)
Line Breaks - 3
Tackle Breaks - 29
Missed Tackles - 46
Ineffective Tackles - 15
Errors - 8
Penalties Conceded - 5

The Bulldogs showed some fight in the first half last week against Manly and actually led 12-10 heading into the sheds. They did well in the second half and weren’t really put away until the last 14 minutes. But in the end, Manly were just that little too good and the Bulldogs went down 36-18. The final score doesn’t really reflect how determined the Bulldogs were. I thought their defensive effort against the Sea Eagles was top notch considering where they’re sitting on the ladder. They were unlucky with 2 tries that Manly scored but they’ll be pretty pleased (or should be) with their effort especially taking into account the lack of possession (39%) they had. Trent Barrett wasn’t too impressed with the bunker giving Turbo that try and Joe Stimson placed on report for pulling Marty’s hair 😁. "The try to Trbojevic which wasn't a try, how they get that wrong, I just don't know," Barrett said. "And it changes the game. That was a bad one, there were a few.” Oh Trent, it is what it is mate. Just move on buddy.

Possession 39%
Completion Rate - 82% (27/33)
Tackle Breaks - 12
Missed Tackles - 37
Ineffective Tackles - 17
Errors - 7
Penalties Conceded - 6

Verdict: I can go out with a bang or a whimper. Bulldogs for me😁.

Let’s finish off with another “Song of the Week”…

Rolling down the hill, snowballing getting bigger.
Explosion in the chamber, the hammer from the trigger…

OK kids, good luck with your tipping and may your team win by 40 points! Until next week. Cheers 🐔 🐔 🐔

Dragons-fanboy's picture

Hello all, my tips for this week include a few roughies why not? Nothing to lose! There is quite the mixed bag anyways:

Raiders by 2
Sharks by 6
Panthers by 28
Knights by 1
Manly by 10
Dragons by 8
Titans by 12
Tigers by 7

Awesome! Good luck with everyone's team for this week and with everyone's tips for this week. For those of us, I imagine a lot! We get to watch our teams play for the final time this season. Oh well, there is always next season eh? Let's hope our team can finish off with a win I would rather the Dragons just have their season over and done with already to be quite frank. At least we face a reserve grade Rabbits this weekend gives me at least some confidence for this week and something worth watching one last time... HOPEFULLY!

MGM's picture

@ Newbie, @BigPete,@MarkAshford,@Christine,@MaryS,@Steely ,
Hi everyone,
Before the start of this round I just want to weigh in on the L.Mitchell/Joey Manu incident.(which I was too angry about last weekend to comment on without swearing)
Many have spoken in his defense including Phil Gould and his cohorts at Channel Nine pointing out that , unless you've played the game, you can't understand ... more deleted swearing from me !
To me, this looked more like an act of aggression than it did a tackle.
Mitchell decided 7 or 8 meters away that he was going to try and take Manu out of the game. As Manu succumbed to the other THREE tacklers and looked to offload, Mitchell's intent just increased at that point which was wreckless and dangerous to put it MILDLY, and this was his MATE !..... Maybe somewhere in the back of his mind he was hoping not to make contact with Manu's head, but at the most, that would have been a secondary consideration , the primary motivation/consideration was definitely still to take Manu"out"!
Which brings me back to my old "chestnut", the one that first fired me up to start making comments on this site :- a player's mindset is what makes them either dangerous, wreckless or players with integrity.... Their actions and the consequences are what follows , but it all starts with their mindset, their intention, which I tried to identify months ago (after Magic Round) as a major factor in head-high contact ... YES, there will be plenty of accidents still.
This was no accident.
Plenty are jumping to defend Latrell Mitchell and I must acknowledge his immense talent and impact on any game, especially "big" games.
Some have said what a great guy he is off the field but to me he lost all claims to off-field integrity when he tried to hijack his indigenous heritage to excuse himself for breaking lockdown rules and inviting others to do the same last year.
He risked the livelihoods of everyone in the NRL at a time when the "powers that be" were questioning whether players and others could be trusted to obey the rules in order to keep the season going ... and WHY ?.. because HE felt that he was above the rules, he felt he could not just bend the rules but could break them .. HE felt that if he got caught he could make up piss-weak excuses on the fly and rely on "benefit of the doubt" , just like he is now by calling this latest act of thuggery an ACCIDENT.
To quote Big Pete and Christine - "he thinks he's bigger than the game".
Latrell Mitchell (and some others like him) needs to show some respect for the God-given talent and opportunities that have been bestowed upon him by many and play the game properly and with some concern for the health and welfare of those he laughingly calls mates.
Maybe he could use his time on suspension to study up on the meaning of words like "integrity" and "mateship".
I liked Big Pete's idea that Mitchell can only return when Joey Manu is fit to play , but that kind of logic doesn't fly in the NRL.

Steel Panther's picture


Nice post and hard to argue with any of it. I think of Mitchell & many of the other rule breakers (Josh Dugan more than once, Jai Arrow, the Dragons incident to name a few) versus the sacrifice of family & friends the Warriors have made these past seasons, and likely next season too.

Says a lot about character....

mark ashford's picture

Hi MGM & Steely,
MGM read your comment carefully and agree with every word. Latrelle seems to have a "bigger man" complex and thinks he is above the game and it's rules. Don't want to get into racial comments so I won't but I do think our media have pumped up this guys to rediculous heights. His holiday may give him some time for thought but I doubt it.

Baggy_Gee's picture

In relation to Latrell is his attitude. There is no inducement in the world that would make me want him to be one of the BOYS, and there is no team that he makes better. I know it is well trod ground, but after his season, and the ease at which he can be put off his game, who would want him as the marquee signing at their club?

MGM's picture

Watching the Roosters v Raiders ...
As with most games these days, a lot of those "flat" passes look quite forward to me !
Maybe if the guy about to receive the pass hung back a bit

MGM's picture

NEWBIE - great to see your team get the win !

newbie from perth's picture


Read your comments regarding “you-know-who” and glad to know I’m not alone. Thumbs up to Steely, Mr Ashford and Baggy for chiming in too.

Watched the Chooks tonight (obviously) and happy we got the win. Not so sure we would’ve won by that margin had the Raiders played a little better. They made so many “basic” errors (so did we) I think they made us look good. And yeah, so many passes looked forward to me too. Mind you, I see that in every game I watch so maybe they are just real borderline “flat” passes where the guy turns his body backwards just enough to fool the referee. Who knows?

So we’re sitting in 4th but not for long. Manly should win on Saturday so we’ll drop down. Rather moot if Baggy’s BOYS beat the Panthers Friday night though. Having said that, I think Manly will finish 4, Roosters 5 and the Eels 6. Let’s wait and see eh?

OK, I’m off to watch Robbo’s presser so I’ll catch y’all later. Cheers. 🐔 🐔 🐔

a's picture

Your roosters will finish 5 and have to face either sharks or Titans

Steel Panther's picture

I've never been a fan of blaming the coach but after last night's pathetic effort by Canberra (given what was at stake) surely it's time for Ricky Stuart to step aside. If he couldn't get them up for what turned out to be a season defining game, he needs to let someone else have a crack. There's been a lot of unhappy rumblings coming out of the Raiders camp this season. Time to move on Ricky.

The Thinker's picture

Just a heads up for those who are new to the tipping comp on this site - we keep tipping all the way through the finals series.

All the best

Christine's picture

In my opinion in regards to the latrell matter , i personally think he will not learn from it & before we know it he will be at it again unfortunatly & i hope we don't ever see another alex mc kinnon incident again ...

Screaming Eagle's picture

Hello all,

Old member back in town looking to get into the 2022 NRL season tipping.

How do i go about that?


BigPeteBx's picture

Afternoon MGM - we have great support here at Thinkers.
It doesn't fly with NRL is very true - because there is so much back-scratching goes on.

Keep well mate
Big Pete in a wet Bx.

BigPeteBx's picture

Struth Screamin - welcome back for the short term.
Did you get the boot from Zero Tackle?
I need some good Sea Eagle support here, as I've been the lone ranger, but we have good considerate posters/bloggers.
Some past Manly supporters just flew, without a feather left behind.
Somehow I know they'll be watching/reading!

You just need to keep an eye on proceedings here and when Thinker calls for expression of interest for 2022 Thinker Comp. He'll no doubt give you a post, so don't just give it the flick, that you haven't heard from him. He and T-L-H are busy persons and with all NRL matches now in Qld, they are racking their brains with venue changes and times.

Cheers and Go The Mighty Eagles. The Boys will be playing the finals for Bozo - no doubt about that.
Big Pete

newbie from perth's picture

@ “a”
Yeah mate, finish 5th we did. Don’t mind who we play next week as I “believe” we will win. Not so sure about the week after that though (ha-ha). Cheers brother, stay safe up there.

@ Screaming Eagle
Yeah, hope to see you back in the tipping next year mate. More engagement here is always welcome and Big Pete would appreciate the extra support 😉. Nice avatar too by the way. Cheers.

@ Anyone & Everyone - Question on NRL Statistics:

OK, I have a question regarding “minutes played” I hope someone can help me with. I was looking at the stats on the NRL website for the Chooks (yeah, who else eh 🤪) and noticed something strange with the minutes played for Tukupa Hau Tapuha.

In the first column under “Minutes Played” it shows him with 34:00. If you go to the last columns on the extreme right and look under “Stint One” and “Stint Two” you will see 18:41 and 09:26 respectively. If you add up those two times you get 28:07 and not 34:00 as shown in the first column. See what I mean? Did he play 34 minutes or did he play 28 minutes? I’m confused. Anyone able to explain? Cheers. 🐔 🐔 🐔

BigPeteBx's picture

@All the Guys at Thinkers site and Tipping.
Happy Fathers Day to you all and have a nice an enjoyable one.

@The Ladies here who play the fatherly role - a Happy one to you also.

Cheers all, keep well and be safe.
Big Pete

Steel Panther's picture

Nice post Big Pete!! Wishing you a lovely Fathers Day too.

U must have been impressed with Manly yesterday, especially the final 15 minutes. Tommy's last try was one of the best I've seen in a long time. Just sensational. That lad Garrick is a real gem and surely Jason Saab has to be the quickest man in the NRL right now. Hard to believe Manly lost their first four games. That seems like years ago.....

tigerholic's picture

Cheers BigPete
All the best to all of the dads, hope you all enjoy the day with loved ones.


Steel Panther's picture

That performance by the Warriors today was the most humiliating in the history of the club. As if the score wasn't bad enough, the actions and behaviour of some of the players was downright embarrassing.

tigerholic's picture


I feel your pain mate, humiliating, embarrassing, disappointing, typical and overall not good enough by my Tigers.

I couldn't and I won't be listening to the coach, same old bullshuit trying to say we are building something special.

I need to remove my thoughts from footy for a bit.

Had a great fathers day though.


Steel Panther's picture


Mine was going pretty well too until I made the mistake of watching the Warriors game. The knives are out for Lodge, Evans & Tevaga, the three clowns that got binned. Many calling for Nathan Brown's head too.

It's rare I watch rugby but that's what I did today. ABs v Wallabies on at the same time as your Tigers. I changed channel a couple of times & was shocked to see the score in the league and knew you'd be disappointed too.

Footy wise an "unhappy" Fathers Day for both of us.

Christine's picture

Happy father's day to all the father's on the thinker's website including the thinker , may it be the best for you all in every way cheers Christine ...

a's picture

Have a happy Father’s Day everyone

The Thinker's picture

@Screaming Eagle

Welcome's great to hear from you.

I have added you as a tipster on the site for next season.

If you have any questions just let me know.

All the best

The Thinker

George Moringu's picture

The tinker, thank you for putting the scores of the teams and if you can also include team first half and second half win.

Thank you..

The Last Samurai's picture

Evening Mr Thinker
Happy Days Its The finals.
As per your post that the tipping comp continues until the grand final.
Just checking what time does your tips have to be in for this?
Kind Regards
The Last Samurai

The Thinker's picture

@The Last Samurai

You have up until the kick off for the first game of each round or finals series. So for week one of the finals, the first game kicks off at 7.50pm on Friday night.

You can also change your tips anytime up until that point...if Trbojevic misses the bus to the game or something :-)

I should have the tipping page for week one of the finals published soon.

All the best

The Thinker


The Last Samurai's picture

Morning Thinker,
Thank you so much for getting back to us so promptly.
Apart from jumping in the car to give Trbojevic a lift.Not that I have had to in the past but if required I had to change my tips prior to kick off do I just go into the tipping page sheet again and resubmit thus those tips supersedes the previous one
Sorry for checking that better safe than sorry
Kind Regards
The Last Samurai

The Thinker's picture

@The Last Samurai

That's exactly right - just click on the 'Show/Hide the tipping comp form' link. When it opens your previous tips will display, but you can change your tips and resubmit them. 

And once the first game starts, you won't be able to access your tips no changes from that point.

All the best

The Thinker

NRL tipping is easier if you follow the NRL news