Ricky’s Team of the Week: Rd 8

Well, here we are again for another week, my Team of the Week. There’s been some great performances this week by a lot of players, including by some in a losing side, so who would you pick? Keep in mind, all these selections are based on the points system of 3, 2 & 1 that I personally decide. Do you agree with this weeks Team of the Week?

1. Jarryd Hayne – Often criticised for not putting in enough effort during games both this season and in past years, Hayne stepped up when it mattered even if his side lost, putting on a solid display in both attack and defence. Made two brilliant try-saving tackles on bigger forwards and had some great darting runs on the outside, one of which led to a line-break.

2. Tim Lafai – Playing in the centres for the Dogs with Krisnan Inu out suspended, the young gun has taken his chance, producing a scintillating display in his side’s win over the Wests Tigers. Carving up the edge almost at will, Lafai produced perhaps the best performance of his career in the landslide win.

3. Jamie Lyon – Tipped as one of the best centres in the game both in attack and defence, Jamie Lyon has an uncanny knack of getting around his man and producing an opportunity for his outside men. Not the quickest man on the field, it’s his experience that helps to create opportunities, ones that more often than not lead to points for the Manly side.

4. Greg Inglis – Widely regarded as the most in-form player in the game right now, the things that you see Greg Inglis do on the footy field are simply amazing. A natural athlete and gifted with a mix of speed, strength, finesse and power, stopping him is no easy feat, as most teams are slowly finding out each week.

5. Blake Ferguson – His off-field problems have been well documented but with that all behind him, the young Raiders centre has put in some spirited performances, including a crucial one against the Storm in the Raiders upset win, as he looks to continue the good form in order to be re-signed by the club.

6. Todd Carney – Having only just returned from injury, you’d excuse Todd Carney for being a bit rusty but he has shown no signs of it, putting in a solid performance to help his side to a narrow win this week. On his current performances, you’d have him playing and starting for NSW at pivot.

7. Shaun Johnson – Another player often criticised for inconsistency, Shaun Johnson has started the year all guns blazing despite his team’s slow start to the year. Leading the NRL in 40/20’s along with Chris Sandow, Johnson is doing all he can to lift the Warriors and move up the ladder.

8. Matt Scott – Regarded by some as the best prop in the game, it was a performance that many could be proud of, after he ran and ran and ran, then ran some more, to amass some colossal metres for the Cowboys in their win over the Eels. There’s no question he’s an elite prop in the NRL.

9. Josh Reynolds – Still only young and learning the game, Josh Reynolds hasn’t exploded off the blocks so far in 2013 like he did last year, but he did put in a solid performance in his side’s drubbing of the Tigers. In a couple of years, with some good form, he’ll be one to watch for a potential Origin berth.

10. Andrew Fifita – The Sharks prop is well on his way to becoming an elite NRL prop, as Andrew Fifita amassed a total metres gained column of monumental proportions, as he ran, barged, fended and stopped would-be tacklers from making a play at him with a barnstorming display.

11. Sam Burgess – Every week, you know what you’re going to get with Sam Burgess and that is consistency. He goes out on the field, does his job, causes problems for the defence and gives it his all, as he puts his hand up as one of the NRL’s elite back-rowers.

12. Simon Mannering – Injured earlier in the season and a bit out of form early on, Warriors captain Simon Mannering seemed to have found his mojo in the win over the Titans as he lead from the front and put in a solid performance, producing offloads at will all leading to solid opportunities for the Warriors to score points. For his sake, hopefully consistency is what we see in his game now.

13. Shaun Fensom – Perhaps one of the most under-rated players in the game in regards to international duties, Shaun Fensom is the sort of player that every club needs. With a fantastic work-rate in both attack and defence and able to play 80 minutes, he’s basically a clone of a young Nathan Hindmarsh, who was in everything and anything when it came to producing on the rugby league field.

14. Jordan Kahu – Just a young back starting out his NRL career after some horrific knee injuries, he has time to make up for – as Jordan Kahu, who came in for the injured Broncos centre Justin Hodges, showed that he is a talented kid with a bright future ahead of him.

15. James Tamou – Another elite prop in the game, Tamou also produced some fantastic metres for his side. A tall man, Tamou’s height and speed at which he hits the line comes in handy, often making him hard to tackle and thus able to gain those extra metres. He’s a shoe-in for the NSW prop position, as he looks to make his mark once more on the Origin arena.

16. James Graham – Returning from his suspension for biting, Graham wasted no time in getting stuck into rugby league once more, as he helped to lay the platform for his Dogs side to produce points, with a fantastic effort. If he can stay out of trouble and not attempt to bite anyone again, along with Kasiano, the two can catapult the Dogs into a potential finals spot despite a slow start to the season.

17. Jamal Idris – Struggling to find form at times since his move from the Dogs a couple of years back, Jamal Idris played the best game of his Titans career if not his career in general, as he wreaked havoc for the Warriors defensive line. The Titans will be hoping that games like that are not few and far between, as they look to get back into the winners circle.

Player of the Week: Andrew Fifita (Cronulla Sharks).

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