NRL Power Rankings Rnd 23

NRL Power Rankings for Round 23:

1. (2) Melbourne Storm: Back into the No.1 position in the Power Rankings after holding out a spirited challenge by the Eels in Melbourne. Proving capable in the arm wrestle style matches now, Bellamy would be happy with their gritty nature over the past few weeks.
“Number of times Craig Bellamy swore during last Fridays game: 248 times”
Power Score: 9/10

2. (4) Bulldogs: The quiet achievers have been winning without their stars and getting little attention. Their hard fought game against the Broncos in Brisbane was typical of the Bulldogs attitude come finals time. Will have every other team looking over their shoulders.
“Chances of Bulldogs end of season trip being anywhere within Australia – Slim to none”
Power Score: 9/10

3. (1) Manly Sea Eagles: Looked the better team when they had the ball, limited possession killed them. May have missed Matt Orford slightly. Could be the loss Manly had to have leading into the finals. Won’t be too worried at this stage.
“Chances of Des Hasler cracking a smile this year after a win OR a loss – 5/1”
Power Score: 9/10

4. (5) Parramatta Eels: Although they have lost 2 on the trot, the Eels pushed Melbourne hard and with an inferior possession rate of 40% were very unlucky not to steal the game. 2 tries a piece with conversions the difference. Seem to be traveling ok – need to win next 2 games to secure home final.
“Odds of Brian Smith ringing Denis Fitzgerald and asking to be put on the waiting list for assistant roles in 2008 at the Eels – 75/1”
Power Score: 8.5/10

5. (7) South Sydney Rabbitohs: The Rugby League dream is alive and the Bunnies are coming good at the right time. Their attack still needs some serious tweaking, but for true determination and focus – they are certainly in the mix.
“Promoters dream; Eels v Rabbits in a finals game, half-time entertainment Michael Hagan vs Jason Taylor in a cage match”
Power Score: 8.5/10
6. (6) North Queensland Cowboys: Seem to have the ship sailing again. Forwards put their hand up in tough times of low stock and old hand Jason Smith returned with good impact. If they can hang on to the Top 4 now, will be a tough opponent in the early weeks. Good turnaround from the Northerners.
“Odds rival teams will circulate another rumor regarding the personal lives of Cowboys players and their wives as we near finals time – 5/1”
Power Score: 8.5/10

7. (9) Wests Tigers: Return to the winners circle this week after some tough times in the wilderness. Robbie Farah single handedly won them the game, albeit with a zimmer frame. Farah is their man; can he win them the NRL premiership on 1 leg? Time well tell, ideally would like to rest Farah if they knew their table position prior to the final game in Round 25.
“Odds of Benji Marshall staying on the wing in defence during opposition 5th tackle – 1000/1”
Power Score: 8/10

8. (3) NZ Warriors: A big drop in the Power Rankings for the NZ Warriors. Lost their focus during the final stages of the Canberra game. Needed to win to prove their mental strength away from home. If they can beat Manly and sneak into the Top 4 – their NRL finals campaign has so much more potential.
“Chances of NZ Warriors officials flying to Sydney and checking into a hotel near Robert Finch’s office over the next few weeks – 2/1”
Power Score: 7.5/10

9. (11) Gold Coast Titans: Took the prize in a hyped up match against the Roosters. Forwards were dominant and Scott Prince is in sublime form, look likely to just miss the NRL Top 8 due to tough games in the final two rounds. Struggle to win away from home and this has been their problem all year.
“Chances of Mat Rogers getting another tattoo if the Titans win the comp – slim to none (there is no real estate left on his body)”
Power Score: 7.5/10

10. (13) Penrith Panthers: Racing up the Power Rankings charts with a bullet; mainly thanks to new kid – Jarrod Sammut. They look hungry the Panthers, or maybe its carefree? Whatever it is – they look good, they are scoring plenty of tries and quality tries at that.
“Odds of Matt Elliott needing an operation to install a pacemaker during the off-season – 15/1”
Power Score: 7/10

11. (8) Sydney Roosters: Dream run finally came to an end. Look likely to miss the NRL Finals – but have shown us some gritty and determined Rugby League over the past month or so. Salvaged their year, signed a boom coach and the future looks good. Will enjoy their end of season trip now.
“Odds of Nick Politis and Chris Anderson exchanging Christmas Cards – 250/1”
Power Score: 7/10

12. (12) Brisbane Broncos: Facing injury tolls comparable to the Vietnam War, the Broncos young guns tried their guts out against the Bulldogs. Were unlucky not to escape with a win, might have lost their spot in the NRL finals after Souths upset Manly last night. Dave Taylor is their great white hope. Need some luck in the next fortnight.
“Chances of Allan Langer being recalled to solve Broncos halfback crisis – 80/1”
Power Score: 7/10

13. (15) Canberra Raiders: This team are amazing in the ACT, they could win the premiership if it was moved to Bruce Stadium. Showed fighting spirit to pull one out of the bag. Showing so much promise at times, its a shame to see them miss the cut. Have composed a dangerous team that will flourish in the next year or two.
“Odds of Raiders publishing book titled ‘Secret of Our Home Success, No Night Life in Canberra’ – 25/1”
Power Score: 7/10
14. (10) Cronulla Sharks: Showed their usual grinding, safety first Rugby League style again in Round 23. Notice how the Sharks games are always close? Thats because they play the most boring brand of Rugby League known to man – dummy half runs, ruck wrestle-mania and touch finders – fun, fun, fun. Need a facelift in 2008 or will get bogged down again.
“Chances of Cronulla Players attending a ‘skirmish’ day for an end of year outing – Slim to None (Someone might get killed)”
Power Score: 6.5/10

15. (14) St George Illawarra Dragons: Showed their frustration on the field after a clumsy loss to the Cowboys. Are starting to get some good combinations going, but lack patience and experience in key areas. Injury problems continue to dog them, it seems nearly every second tackle their players remain down needing attention for something. Need something over at the Saints – we just don’t know what it is.
“Odds of Peter Doubst conducting an ‘external audit’ on himself and his performance – 500/1”
Power Score: 6/10

16. (16) Newcastle Knights: Continuing to cut a lonely figure anchored to the bottom of the Power Rankings. Remain lifeless and lost in defence, morale non existent and obviously got other things on their mind apart from Rugby League. At least they got a crowd to the game against the Panthers – there’s a positive.
“Odds of Kirk Reynoldson being named in Round 25 Knights Line-up – 100,000/1”
Power Score: 5/10

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