SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JULY 07: Rhyse Martin of the Bulldogs reacts after converting a try during the round 17 NRL match between the Canterbury Bulldogs and the Canberra Raiders at Belmore Sports Ground on July 7, 2018 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Brett Hemmings/Getty Images)

Season 2018 is over for half the teams in the competition. The players are dreaming of white sandy beaches and end of year trips. Yet before the bags are packed and we erase from our memories the often terrible performances of the teams that finished in the bottom eight, let’s have a look at some of the positives that they had. Whilst all these teams will have a lot of work to do to improve their fortunes in 2019, what can they take from this season to build on?

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Wests Tigers

The team that many believed coming into 2018 would leak the most points, showed that they really worked on their defence in the off season.

In 2017, the Tigers gave up 571 points, however in 2018 they had pulled that back to 460.

They made more tackles than any other team in the competition and the work they did in defence was evident in the opening rounds of the seasons when they had hard fought wins over the Storm and Roosters.

Esan Marsters, Mahe Fonua and Moses Mbye showed there is some strength and excitement in the backs. Whilst Luke Brooks had undoubtedly his best season.

TAMWORTH, AUSTRALIA – APRIL 21: Luke Brooks of the Tigers runs the ball during the round seven NRL match between the Wests Tigers and the Newcastle Knights at Scully Park on April 21, 2018 in Tamworth, Australia. (Photo by Jason McCawley/Getty Images)
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6 COMMENTS

  1. There’s actually terribly little change in the top 8 over the past decade. Its mainly the same teams who dominate: Storm, Roosters, Sharks, Broncos, Cowboys and Dogs – the latter two have fallen away a bit but I’m sure at least the Cowboys will be back on top soon. Every now and then there’s a little bit of change, some of the other teams do well for a very short time but really its same same same.

    I personally am really tired of watching the Storm wrestle their way to top of the table finishes every year. The wrestling is so bad that we will never know if Cam Smith and team were champions or chaperoned through by the NRL administration. I think the latter, but you can all shout me down I’m sure.

    • Oh please, the “wrestle” is part of every team’s defence.

      The storm aren’t consistently very good because of wrestling – they’re consistently consistent. End of story. They defend well and they exploit bad defence better than any team.

      I love how you prepare yourself to be shouted down because you’re know you’re talking shi.t

      • Yeah they do all those things, but don’t get penalised like everybody else. They get away with absolute murder in the ruck and every year are low on the overall penalty count. You say all teams wrestle. I say nobody does it half as much as they do. But call it good defense if you want.

        Good news though. Consider this, they are in the middle of a monumental rebuild. Half their team are in the early phase of the their career and they just missed the minor premiership. Should have won it. Pretty sure they’ll be unbeatable yet again once this group matures.

        • Agree butters, they are protected more than any other team. The wrestling is to a ridiculous level with Cam Smith the main perpetrator 2nd or 3rd and every tackle he makes should be pinged and then sin binned but gets away with it every time. They are a boring side to watch for this reason. No shouting down here, just total agreement !

        • Agree butters, they are protected more than any other team. The wrestling is to a ridiculous level with Cam Smith the main perpetrator 2nd or 3rd in and every tackle he makes should be pinged and then sin binned but gets away with it every time. They are a boring side to watch for this reason. No shouting down here, just total agreement !

  2. Agree butters, they are protected more than any other team. The wrestling is to a ridiculous level with Cam Smith the main perpetrator 2nd or 3rd in and every tackle he makes should be pinged and then sin binned but gets away with it every time. They are a boring side to watch for this reason. No shouting down here, just total agreement !

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