1. Kalyn Ponga (Newcastle Knights)
After five rounds the 20-year-old is leading the Dally M count and for good reason. Was scintillating once again for the Hunter with over 200 running metres, five tackle breaks, a try-assist and an epic try save on Broncos halfback Kodi Nikorima.
2. David Fusitu’a (New Zealand Warriors)
The NRL’s leading try-scorer after the opening five rounds of the competition. Scored another double on Saturday night against the Cowboys and ran for over 150 metres to boot.
3. Euan Aitken (St. George Illawarra Dragons)
Should come close to representative honours after another strong showing for St. George Illawarra in what was perhaps the best match of the week in his club’s tough win over the South Sydney Rabbitohs. Gave Greg Inglis nightmares all evening, scoring a try and running for 140 metres.
4. Joseph Leilua (Canberra Raiders)
His best performance in close to 12 months in what was Canberra’s first win of the season. Scoring two tries, recording two-line breaks, two offloads and three tackle breaks; Leilua was among best on field.
5. Josh Mansour (Penrith Panthers)
The first time this season Josh Mansour sees his name on this list. After a quiet start to the season, the bustling winger scored a try, was strong in defence and ran for over 180 metres with ball in hand. Nearing his best?
6. Aidan Sezer (Canberra Raiders)
As Joseph Leilua played his best game for the Raiders in 12 months, teammate Aidan Sezer put in his best performance for the club since arriving at the Nation’s capital in 2016. Orchestrated two tries for Canberra in their 16-point victory over the Bulldogs.
7. Mitchell Pearce (Newcastle Knights)
Joins teammate Kalyn Ponga on top of the Dally M leader board after the opening handful of rounds. Sunk the boot into Bennett’s Broncos with a strong kicking game and an all-important field goal on the stroke of half-time.
8. Andrew Fifita (Cronulla Sharks)
In a badly beaten side, Fifita remained one of the best players on the field. 176 run metres along with a whooping seven offloads and six tackle breaks saw Blues coach Brad Fittler receive a bout of the blues. It was revealed last week Fifita would stay eligible for Tonga rather than Australia and New South Wales.
9. Damien Cook (South Sydney Rabbitohs)
His strong running game was on display against the Dragons with 117 run metres, six tackle busts and a line break. Was strong defensively in his 80-minute performance, completing 40 tackles.
10. Jarrod Wallace (Gold Coast Titans)
Returned to form in the Gold Coast’s 12-point victory over the Sea Eagles. Ran 140 metres and performed 22 tackles on his way to scoring his first try of the season.
11. Chris Lawrence (Wests Tigers)
12. Ryan Matterson (Sydney Roosters)
13. Jai Arrow (Gold Coast Titans)
Another one the Broncos will rue letting fly coop to the Titans. Scored two tries, recorded nine tackle breaks and ran for close to 200 metres in what was a 60-minute breakout performance.