Results this weekend were an absolute nightmare for spots 4-14 for Power Rankings.
Half the competition now sits at 2-2, so here goes…
1. Dragons (Last week: 1)
Another weekend another ridiculous display from the Red V superstars. Most had the Dragons starting the season well but this is near insanity. The Dragons played the Knights off the park in the Gong sunshine on Sunday afternoon. Ben Hunt was the star of the show this week although it was Nene Macdonald with two tries and over 180 running metres. Tim Lafai has spiders on him at the moment and made another two line breaks. Leeson Ah Mau is the best interchange player in the game right now.
2. Warriors (Last week: 2)
More humble pie please! The Warriors whacked the Roosters on Saturday afternoon to the tune of 30 points to 6. More impressively they did it without Shaun Johnson. Blake Green is the buy of the year, just hand the award over. Talk of him playing Origin this year has turned from a laugh into dead serious discussion. Mason Lino was electric in the seven in SJ’s absence. The Warriors are favourites at home this weekend as they host last year’s grand finalists the Cowboys. They welcome back Shaun Johnson and Simon Mannering.
3. Tigers (Last week: 3)
Only a debatable golden-point penalty has been able to stop the Tigers thus far in 2018. The Eels sure couldn’t. Luke Brooks had an absolute blinder in leading his side to a 30-20 Easter Monday win. How good is Corey Thompson going? For the record you couldn’t pay me enough to tackle Matthew Eisenhuth one on one. The Tigers are absolutely flying in all departments at the moment. Their attack finally fired and they looked incredible. The Eels flattered the score-line late but make no mistake this was all about the Tigers.
4. Panthers (Last week: 5)
James Maloney put in the performance of the round in whipping the Cowboys off the park on Thursday night. The premiership specialist was untouchable and almost played with the Cowboys defenders at times. The 33-14 score-line was spot on as the Panthers were easily the better side. James Fisher-Harris battered the Cowboys pack while Kikau and co ensured Thurston and Morgan were too busy tackling to set their side up in attack. Incredibly all the attacking stats were in favour of the Cowboys, but this was as one sided a game for the Panthers and you’re likely to see.
5. Storm (Last week: 4)
The Storm will be licking their wounds after a horror weekend. They were held try-less in the Shire by a far more determined Cronulla and will be without Will Chambers for two weeks thanks to a late brain snap. Dale Finucane also hurt his hand and will miss game time. Curtis Scott had his best game of the season but otherwise this was a dour night for a side more interested in giving away penalties than footballing lessons. Bellamy will not be happy.
6. Sharks (Last week: 11)
The Sharks emerged from one of the most horrible games you’re ever likely to see with two points and plenty of confidence. They held the Storm try-less despite conceding a ridiculous amount of penalties. Edrick Lee’s try on the back of some brilliant work from Ramien was enough to capture the points. Chad Townsend is kicking at 100% in 2018. Andrew Fifita had another best-on-field game, two weeks in a row for the Tongan prop. The Sharks were able to blunt the Storm attacking weapons and did what they do best, win the dog fight. Good signs.
7. Broncos (Last week: 6)
I would love to have punished the Broncos further for their ‘effort’ on Sunday evening but their results over the previous two weeks were enough to drop only one spot. The Broncs will be shaking their head at losing a home game in those circumstances. Kodi Nikorima’s try was a rare highlight on an otherwise unforgettable evening at Suncorp. They have a good chance to fire straight back against the Knights on Saturday night.
8. Sea Eagles (Last week: 10)
Manly are literally the perfect number eight position. They’ve had two near perfect games at home mixed with two horrible away game efforts. Saturday night was the Tommy Turbo show once again at Brookvale. A Manly number one scoring freaky tries at Brookie, sound familiar? Manly suffered two season-ending injuries and will be without their number one for two weeks but right now they are looking untouchable at Lotto Land yet like a reserve grade side away from home. Huge test this weekend away to the Titans, a game they should win.
9. Titans (Last week: 14)
The Titans continue to yo-yo up and down the power rankings. For two weeks in a row they were nothing more than on-lookers as they were run off the park against the Warriors and Dragons but on Sunday evening they easily outplayed supposed big brother the Broncos. Phillip Sami scored a hatty but it was the Titans big men in Wallace, Arrow and James who set the platform. Konrad Hurrell easily outpointed Jack Bird in their battle. Kane Elgey had his best game in a long time.
10. Rabbitohs (Last week: 13)
The Bunnies have now put together back-to-back wins after a come from behind win over the Dogs on Easter Friday. Late tries to Hymel Hunt and everyone’s second favourite player Cam Murray ended the Dogs short-lived revival. Sam Burgess made over 180 metres in a huge performance. Unfortunately he will miss two weeks due to this weekend’s strangest judiciary decision. Greg Inglis looks to be feeling somewhere toward full fitness. The Bunnies welcome back Adam Reynolds although I’m not sure dropping Adam Doueihi is a good idea.
11. Roosters (Last week: 7)
The Roosters are arguably the most inconsistent side in the competition right now. They were awful in round one, electric in rounds two and three and had no idea in round four. The Warriors ran rings around the tri-colours to the tune of 30-6. The Roosters scored first, in the opening two minutes, but from there it was all the visitors. Latrell Mitchell looked much more dangerous in attack and James Tedesco looked good after a virtual holiday last weekend. They need to win this weekend.
12. Knights (Last week: 8)
The Knights ran into a red hot Red V outfit on Sunday afternoon but the reality of 2018 is starting to hit them all the same. Now 2/2 after four games the season looks like it’s going to be a grind. Don’t get me wrong the Knights were far from terrible on the weekend but Brock Lamb looked slow while Tautau Moga’s injury robs them of their biggest threat out wide. They need to bounce back at home against the Broncos to stop minds slipping back to years gone by.
13. Bulldogs (Last week: 12)
The Dogs will be kicking themselves after letting a lead slip late to drop two points to the Bunnies. Josh Morris continues to turn back the clock with a second straight performance of quality. I don’t know why I’m surprised such is his talents. Keiran Foran is slowly taking game’s by the scruff of the neck and looks better each week. The Dogs forwards faulted late and were ultimately over run. Probably too early for danger signs but a win is needed.
14. Cowboys (Last week: 9)
The Cowboys have now dropped three straight games with their sole win coming in a less than stellar game against the Sharks. Thurston looked way off the pace on Thursday evening and was easily out-pointed by his opposite James Maloney. The Cowboys pack went missing and were bullied despite what the stats suggest. Incredibly the Cowboys won the metres ran and tackle breaks stats but it counts for nothing when you concede 33 points.
15. Raiders (Last week: 15)
The only thing the Raiders did right compared to earlier games is that they didn’t leave getting beaten til late. That is about the length of positives in the capital right now as the Raiders have been awful. Leipana have had zero influence over the past weeks on the back of their forward pack being nullified in a big way. Jack Jack Wighton could do with a stint in the ISP. Stuart really has to work out a way forward or he’ll be looking elsewhere for employment.
16. Eels (Last week: 16)
The Eels showed a little improvement on Monday but were still beaten convincingly by the Tiges. Mitch Moses summed up the feeling at the club on the well circulated facebook video. Parra need a win and they need it soon. The lateral movement by the halves is a real concern but surely Moses and Norman have to fire soon. Up front the Eels have been well beaten.
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