The jostling for NRL Top 8 positions continued with a Round of upsets in some cases. There is a but a glimmer of hope for a few teams to scrape into the finals. While the Bulldogs and Dragons have been standouts, most of the leading sides can beat each other on their day –
After Round 24, 2009.
1. Bulldogs – probably right on par with Dragons now. Cruised home over the Roosters and look calm with Noddy at helm.
2. Dragons – yet another stumble for the front runners? The Broncos followed the Raiders plan and roughed them up.
3. Titans – again tradesmen like, outlasting a gritty Sharks side on the Gold Coast. Really flying under the radar and have home final.
4. Eels – hitting form at business end and have climbed the charts. Still outside Top 8, face yet another massive game against Penrith. At home though.
5. Manly – defence improved out of sight, their test against Storm was exactly what was needed. Here they come, so is the snake.
6. Panthers – burst back into contention with a strong win. Again sublime attack with Jennings and Pritchard, but have they patched defence up?
7. Tigers – did everything right considering their injuries, scored the same amount of tries but just couldn’t get home. In top form, but injuries will hamper.
8. Knights – back to back wins and while no at the 100 percent best, have again played with commitment. Will be tough to beat in next fortnight.
9. Broncos – as above, have really pulled their finger out in the past 2 weeks. Dave Taylor the key. Need to remain injury free.
10. Cowboys – flew out of the blocks under the wing of Jonathan Thurston, but just couldn’t keep it going. Good night, poor year for team under Henry.
11. Souths – smashed by injury and had very little ball, but really didn’t show enough heart in this one. Not a consistent week to week team it seems.
12. Storm – have lost back to back matches now and their problems in forwards evident. No thrust, highly predictable. Attack now flatter, trying to reignite.
13. Warriors – positive win at home, some great tries through many hands. Need to win for confidence and for coach Ivan Cleary.
14. Raiders – again possessing a promising batch of rookies in 2009, but never consistent enough. Need 1-2 big names next year to compete.
15. Sharks – toiled hard against the table topping Titans and showed some ticker, need to keep battling to avoid the wooden spoon.
16. Roosters – no heart, probably deserve spoon more than Sharks. Rudderless shambles at the moment.Brian Smith has his work cut out.