Predicted Finish: 4th
Actual Finish: 6th
I’m going to claim this as Souths proved in the finals that they’re the third/fourth best team in the NRL. Another year as we have come to expect from the powerhouse in red and green.
A third straight Prelim exit though has to frustrate many.
– Points, points points: Top point scorer? Check. Adam Reynolds with 221. Top goal scorer? Check! Adam Reynolds again with 98. Hmm, top try sorer? You bet! Alex Johnston with 23, including FIVE against old rivals the Roosters in the final game of the regular season. 521 points across the regular season, and a points differential of + 169. Makes for some incredible reading and some genuine highlights. Souths were the fourth highest points scorers this year in the regular season and added 100 more across three finals games. Fair to say crossing the line wasn’t never an issue here.
– ANOTHER Prelim: The Bunnies, for the third year in a row, came within minutes of a Grand Final. They would ultimately fall to the Panthers this season but they were right in that game until the final bell. For a team to finish sixth and make a Prelim is very difficult in this day and final’s system. A third straight Prelim shows remarkable consistency only matched (and bettered) by the Storm. Having held onto the large majority of their 2020 squad moving forward, and with Latrell Mitchell returning, it’s hard to bet against a fourth straight Prelim appearance. Hopefully for Bunnies fans the season goes one more week in 2021.
– Fullback Masters: I was a little worried when Latrell started slowly in his new role. Arguably the world’s best centre risked wasting his 2020 season at fullback. I needn’t have worried as he took on the role with great ability and was looking brilliant prior to his injury. Most clubs lose out massively with their top number one on the sidelines, although not the Bunnies who saw Corey Allan rise to become a genuine star. His performances at the back were so good he stepped in for QLD at Origin level. Throw in a more than decent Alex Johnston and the fullbacks for the Bunnies ran riot this year.
– 60-8 win over the Roosters in Round 20: WHAT .. A … WIN!!! Nooooooone saw this coming, surely!? The Bunnies absolutely monstered their most bitter of rivals on the final day of the regular season to the tune of 10 tries to two. Alex Johnston scored five tries and had an absolute field day out wide. Cody Walker was almost on literal fire, while the Bunnies big men threw their opponents around like ragdolls. This was total and utter destruction that the Roosters never recovered from. Must have been oh so sweet.
Watch Zero Tackle’s own Dan Nichols over at Rugby League Outlaws