Ricky’s NRL Team of the Week for Round 21 of the National Rugby League:

Fullback: Anthony Minichello – Everyone thought that Mini was a goner. Everyone thought that Mini had nothing left. Everyone thought that Mini’s career was over. Everyone except for Mini that is, and he showed that he still has what it takes scoring two tries in the Roosters romp over the Eels.

Winger: Akuila Uate – The leading try-scorer in the NRL only extended his margin over the nearest player with a three-try display in the Knights win. Using a mix of speed and brute strength, he tore the Sea Eagles defensive line to shreds.

Centre: Dean Collis – The Tigers reject almost got revenge against his former side scoring two tries, but it wasn’t enough as the Sharks went down to the Tigers. Having lost a bit of speed following a knee injury, he has worked on his game to work around that injury and it seems to be paying dividends as he is in career-best form.

Centre: Steve Michaels – Another player let go who is now excelling, Steve Michaels has had his fair share of injuries over the years, but he finally seems to be putting it behind him. Scoring two tries providing good support for the halves to make an effect, he too seems to be getting back into some good form.

Winger: Justin O’ Neill – The 19 year old just keeps getting better and better. Recently signing a new 2 year deal with the Storm, he showed that he has the potential to be a future star of the Melbourne team and possibly an Origin team. Forming a good combination with Cronk, Smith and Slater also.

Five-Eighth: Mat Rogers – Whilst he may not be with the Titans next year due to salary constraints, he showed that there’s no chip on his shoulder with a man-of-the-match performance in the Titans win. Scored two tries, and is playing well in the halves over the last few games.

Halfback: Chris Sandow – The one shining light for the Bunnies in an otherwise dour performance. He scored their only two tries, and is playing some consistent football. Whether he and the other Bunnies can re-build and play solid football remains to be seen.

Prop: Petero Civoniceva – Yet again, the man shows that age is no factor. Yet again, he outshines every other prop in the game. He is without a doubt the premier prop in the game.

Hooker: Jake Friend – Putting all of his problems behind him, the little terrier wreaks havoc from dummy half in almost every game, and is slowly starting to get his groove back.

Prop: Tim Mannah – Once again, perhaps the lone star in an otherwise woeful performance from the Eels. Deserved his Origin spot, and has to be in contention for next year.

Second Row: Sam Burgess – Without a doubt, the signing of the year. He consistently makes very good metres and a large number of tackles, and is perhaps the most physically intense player in the Souths line-up. Could be suspended for a week for dangerous conduct though.

Second Row: Sam Thaiday – Showed that he is definitely the future of QLD’s forward pack with a dominant display in the Broncos win. He amassed a large number of metres as he always does, and will be looking to add even more as his form continues to improve.

Lock : Liam Fulton – Having previously been on the outer with the Tigers only a couple of years ago, the man is back and playing better than ever. Scored two tries, and is using his physicality to torment opposition sides.

Player of the Week – Akuila Uate/Anthony Minichello

By ricky

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