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Absolutely no one likes split turns


Most of the NRL’s top players sat out the weekend before Wednesday’s first State of Origin, with bad teams unable to take advantage while the Green Machine hummed along.

Here are your NRL Round 13 talking points.

Playing only four games is not good
I set the scene for a good sook on this last week and I have no intention of letting go. Having just four NRL games a weekend is rubbish.

I understand the logic of giving each club a pre-Origin bye and a week off for the standalone game, but I would even accept a longer period of bye allowances if it meant an extra game or two each week.

Like it or not, sport these days is all about delivering content to your audience and even if you’re going to sacrifice your competition at the altar of the original state, you can still play more than four games per weekend.

(Photo by Mark Nolan/Getty Images)

Especially if the games are bludgers
It’s not unreasonable to say that three of the four games were disappointing at best, started by Gold Coast’s absolutely dismal effort against the Cowboys and completed by New Zealand delivering another devilish effort against Manly.

The Titans have actually been lacking recent but unselected Origin players, suggesting they could overcome North Queensland, but again we’ve seen that a good practice is worth its weight in gold.

Canterbury played an excellent ten-minute second half on Friday night, but unfortunately for them Penrith’s second-string formation was pretty good for the other 70.

The best game of the four was undoubtedly the Raiders’ 22-16 win over the Roosters on Sunday afternoon in cold Canberra, but while it was a good home and away game, I dare say fans of the Roosters didn’t enjoy playing without James Tedesco, Lindsay Collins, Daniel Tupou and the injured Jared Waerea-Hargeaves.

The average margin for the weekend was 19 points and if the Raiders and Roosters hadn’t played better, things would have been much worse.

Losing by 30 seven weeks ago was the best thing to happen to Canberra
In Round 7, Canberra went to Penrith and were plowed through the Premiers 36-6, having just 39% possession, being passed over a mile and needing to make 402 tackles. So why would that be a good thing?

At this stage of the season, Canberra had been sloppy, unruly and lazy in defence. But the Panthers’ barrage forced the Raiders into something of a defensive hard reset and since then they’ve tightened up considerably on their way to wins over South Sydney, Cronulla and now the Roosters.

You would have been institutionalized for saying that after following Penrith’s loss with a horrific second-half fade to New Zealand, but there’s a realistic chance Canberra could pinch a place in the bottom half of the eight and bother the best teams. the path.

Would sacking Nathan Brown really make a difference for New Zealand?
Again, the Warriors were crushed early, and again they had no response as Manly trailed to a 32-point win.

It’s easy to tear the Kiwi team apart right now because they’ve been evil on the pitch and they’ve made the decision to appoint Nathan Brown.

But again we have to remember the situation the club have been put in, basically having to go second to the NRL to be able to get those sweet, sweet broadcast dollars and trash three seasons of club and player development from the Warriors.

A few rude words from Paul Kent during the week about how Warriors players shouldn’t complain because ‘they can live in houses, not hotels’ in Redcliffe with their immediate family show a school of thought who just doesn’t understand.

Reece Walsh summed up the state of the team after the loss while speaking to Fox League.

“It’s not good enough. We keep shooting ourselves in the foot. There are just fixes where we don’t succeed. We’re just making it easier for the other team – it’s really frustrating.

“We just have to go home and look in the mirror and ask ourselves ‘do we want to be here, do we want to try for our friends’.

“Right now, the things that we’re launching, we’re just not working for our friends next to us. It’s first-degree, and it’s not good enough.

Even if the Warriors sack coach Nathan Brown, it’s hard to see anything changing when they have to stay in Australia.

Absolutely no one likes split turns

(Tony Feder/Getty Images)

2022 is another delisting when all other clubs can continue as normal. Again we say – let them go home before the game gets even more damaged in New Zealand and before the Warriors have a chance to be there again, let alone add another team. Kiwi.

Quick shots
– NRL chairman Peter V’landys appoints himself chairman of selectors for the Australian men’s Kangaroos team. Is there anyone at NRL headquarters who has the guts to ask ‘are you sure about that, Pete?’

– The Roosters’ next three games are a row of Melbourne, Penrith and then Parramatta bruisers.

– I was wrong last week about Joe Tapine from Canberra. He’s not in the top five rowers in the NRL, he’s in the top two. Pay him big bucks, Raiders. Because someone else will.

– Apparently Josh Addo-Carr and Jake Trbojevic ‘sent messages’ to New South Wales selectors with solid performances… against a Penrith side missing six regulars and the New Zealand Warriors.

– Manly should have won by 26, as Marty Taupau’s 25th-minute try fell closer to the ten-yard line than the goal line.

– Scott Drinkwater’s form at the Cowboys fullback reminds us all why the Melbourne Storm were grooming him to succeed Billy Slater, until he suffered a pectoral muscle injury in the 2019 pre-season and a guy called Ryan Papenhuyzen get his chance…

Next
With 50/50 State of Origin entrants to enter Round 14, we’re waiting to see which teams can go all out.

The Cowboys host the Dragons on Friday in a bid to stay in the top three, and then we have a pretty fun Saturday.

The Souths travel to Robina for the Titans with a host of contenders for that eighth spot, followed by the Roosters against Storm at SCG (for some reason a 5:30 kick-off) and the Raiders head to Brisbane in a bid to reverse a bad record up there against the Broncos.

Sunday looks full of bludgers, so stock up on the lawn mower and set up wireless for Wests Tigers and Manly, Newcastle and Penrith and the Warriors hosting Cronulla.

Then it’s a Canterbury game against Parramatta on Monday afternoon to celebrate the Queen’s birthday, showing her majesty what the NRL thinks of her.

What did you think of the weekend’s NRL games, Roarers? I’ll see you Wednesday night for the Queensland player ratings!




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