The Starting 17 – Saving Trades is for Chumps…

uncategorizedAs we come to the end of the State of Origin effect, this next two weeks will shape to be season defining for many Dream Team players. How you act, or don’t could well make or break your season. No time for jokes and puns, this is serious business! So let’s go.
The Scrum
My introduction may have seemed a little serious, but I can tell you right now – there is a lot that’s going to happen over the next two weeks dream team wise, and you have to be on your game. With this, there are a lot of players that have suddenly given many dream teamers headaches, and I thought I would do my best to cover some of these players and perhaps what you should be looking to do.
Blake Austin – Panthers players are giving DreamTeamers many headaches and Blake Austin is a prime example. Seems to drift in and out of favour in terms of starting, and gains a starting spot this week. Has a BE of 18 this week, but one around 35 ish next week. You could hold for a few more grand, but even if he scores well this week I don’t know that he has much more than another $10-15k in him. Sell prior to Round 19.

 

Matt Ryan – Sladie sold this guy last week, so of course he goes and smashes out a 51, but on a high BE didn’t make too much money. The benefit though is that with that high score, his BE is low for another 2 weeks or so. At this stage and similar to Blake Austin, I think he is prime for exchange probably around Round 20 and will probably be around $230k.

 

Josh Mansour – A lot of us Dreamers got stuck with Josh Mansour after he set the world alight with some massive scores in recent times. Two weeks ago he picked up a back niggle, and has been set to play but then pulling out, leaving many Dreamers frustrated. I know it’s hard to stay faithful right now, but four at least the next four rounds or so, provided he plays, he still has a fair chunk of cash left in him, especially with Coote out of favour. Stay strong and hold onto him until perhaps Round 22 or so – he may just well turn into a keeper, but if not at that stage a nice trade up to Hayne may not be a bad way to go.

 

Sam Burgess – Sam is the true definition of a glass cannon. He scores well when he plays, but his whole career has been riddled with injury. Personally, I will be refraining from him at all next season no matter how well he plays. But if you’re stuck with him right now, here are the facts. Of the nine games he has played this season, he’s only failed to crack 40 three times. Two of those were due to injury, and one was coming back. So if you have him, keep him. I know I will be. He may just reward you with a come back this weekend too.

 

The Bench
Here’s the injury toll from Round 16.

J Dugan (Raiders) – 4 to 6 weeks.

T Thurling (Raiders) –6 to 8 Weeks.

J Thompson (Raiders) – 2 to 3 Weeks.

TSymonds (Roosters) –  Season.

A Harrison (Titans) – 5 weeks.

 

The Ladder


Sladie’s Tigers came away with a narrow victory last weekend, but is far from safe as the race for the Top 8 in Summons is wide open.

 

Result from Last Week’s Match Ups were as follows:

 

Barnes: Metallitgger, Laroche Lions, Howling T’Wolves, Raptor, Toomuchweight,  Fighting Mongooses, Tims Terrorises, WestMagpies

 

Summons:  Sladie’s Tigers, OneEyedTigers, BucketsofBlood, Crank’s Charge, Wello Point Mavens, Yo Mamas, Horsehead Bookends, Tiger Terror

Cheers!

Sladie

2012 – Round 16 – Knights vs Tigers

Preview:

wests tigers game previewTim Sheens faces a tricky assignment this week. Events of much greater importance took priority from last Sunday, but he now has the task of ensuring the team are as ready as possible to tackle Newcastle tonight. The team will include Farah, so that can only boost our chances.

The loss to the Roosters is largely immaterial in the context of the season – and most certainly in the grand scheme of things. I think it’s fair to say there were plenty of positives to come out of the second half performance in terms of team character and passion. The Tigers may have slipped from fourth to seventh, but seeing as there was a four point gap between eighth and ninth at the end of Round 15 it was no big deal. With a bye looming next week, Wests can easily recover the lost ground.

When Wayne Bennett joined the Kinghts this year I thought they’d be a top 4 contender. At this stage of the season they’ll be lucky to scrape into the 8. Injuries and lack of discipline have left Newcastle struggling near the foot of the ladder. They come into this game on a five match losing streak, with the only points since Round 8 coming in the form of two byes. During their most recent week off, all players had to front up for one-on-one heart-to-heart sessions with the coach, so it will be interesting to see how they respond tonight. In particular Uate who was chopped from the Blues Origin III squad. He’s also battling a groin injury and hasn’t trained since returning from Origin II duty. If he does play he’ll face plenty of attention down his flank.

While the hosts will be desparate for a long overdue win, the visitors will be even more desparate to help Robbie begin the process of adjustment after a horrible week. We know the Tigers are a very close club and that the players will rally behind their captain, both on and off the field.  I hope for Robbie’s sake he can enjoy a win with his mates tonight.

Fortune-Teller:

FTS: The Knights right-side defence will be vulnerable, so Lote Tuqiri is a solid bet to open the scoring.
Margin: Tigers by 13.

BWTF Players of the Week:

Thanks to everyone who voted. Players who collected the most votes in each category for Round 15 were:

Best Back/Utility: Marshall (40%) [6/15]
Best Forward: Galloway (53% of votes) [8/15]

Here’s an update of the BWTF player polls so far:

Best Backs
Ryan (7.5 awards)
Marshall (5.5 awards)
Humble (1 award)

Best Forwards
Woods (7 awards)
Fulton (2 awards)
Farah (2 awards)
Ellis (1 award)
Blair (1 award)
Galloway (1 award)

Links for the Round 16 polls will be posted on Facebook after full time.

<^OneEyedTiger^>

The Starting 17 – Going AWOL‏

uncategorizedSo, another week of Dream Team, and yet again more headaches. Round 15 had many players go AWOL – Gallen, Fulton, Mansour and of course Farah to name a few. Throw in Raiders and Warriors bye rounds and you’ve got a recipe for chaos!

 

The Scrum

It’s no secret that we’re in the home stretch now. Only 11 rounds of full NRL competition and 9 rounds of DT including finals.

So you are probably putting the finishing touches on your Starting 17. I want to touch on something in specific with regards to finalizing your team before you go and spend those precious trades – the final hurdle, in the form of State Of Origin 3.

State Of Origin 2 was a bloody and brutal encounter. With so many niggles going around, many of the best players for your DT have either some form of niggle or are yet to have a break. Add in the fact that as far as Head to Head goes, R17 and R18 are byes, it all means that the next few weeks really should be about breathing space.

Not to say you shouldn’t trade at all – I myself am cashing in a cash cow or two over the coming weeks, but the point of all of this simply comes down to the fact that if you’re waiting to pick up a Gun for your run into the finals – you’re best to wait until after Origin 3.

Also, for those of you curious about TRex, I have ruled myself out of getting him for the rest of the year. If you are seriously keen on getting him, my advice is to wait until after Origin to make sure the unit doesn’t break anything else. He has only played four regular club games this year and with only nine left, I’d consider trading elsewhere first.

 

The Bench

Here is a list of injuries from Round 15.

Glenn Stewart (Manly) – 4 to 6 weeks

Beau Champion (Titans) – 1 week

 

The Ladder

Here are the winners from both conferences last week:

Barnes: Laroche Lions, Howling T’Wolves, Campbelltown Tiger, TigerTown12, Sportsmad, Dans Destroyers, Metalliger, westsmagpies

Summons: Tits Magee, mongrel magpies, Tiger_1983, Tiger terror, horsehead bookends, woot woots the 2nd, ktsraptors.

Have a great weekend all!

Sladie

Six To Go: Early Edition

uncategorizedYesterday’s loss was so much more than a game of footy – it was one of the Wests Tigers proudest moments. This wasn’t about the score, this was about spirit. It was an afternoon when Anthony Minichiello pulled off the most incredible one-on-one strip ever seen on a runaway Ben Murdoch-Masila and Martin Kennedy, Frank-Paul Nu’uausala and Jared Waerea-Hargreaves played their annual blinders.

It was an afternoon when Benji Marshall broke down during a minute’s silence dedicated to Sonia Farah and Adam Blair played the worst game of his career. All this, and the Roosters still needed 12 points on the stroke of half time and six at full time to put the Tigers away. While their bodies were willing, the players’ minds were firmly fixed on an inspirational club captain who had made State of Origin history just days earlier.

Look no further than Beau Ryan’s runaway try in the second half that sent the crowd into a frenzy. One of the form wingers in the NRL, Ryan raced more than 50 metres to score, but there was no celebration. The trademark head pat and logo slap were replaced by a cold stare – almost a look of guilt. Tim Moltzen gave a similar reaction when he scored minutes later.

The Tigers didn’t want to play a game of footy yesterday, and who could blame them.

 

<^TigerBrad^>

Six To Go: Captain Courageous

uncategorizedI broke ranks last week and dedicated an entire blog to one player, Curtis Sironen. Sure enough, the Tigers young gun promptly picked up a knee injury and could spend the next six weeks on the sideline. Despite the very real risk of tempting fate, I’m going to talk about Robbie Farah for a moment…

In the BWTF season preview I said Farah was the key to season 2012: “There’s no doubt Farah is a tremendous talent who wears his heart on his sleeve, but he has to take his game to the next level in 2012. Is Robbie Farah a genuine superstar you can build a team around or is he a glorified role player who will never truly reach his full potential?”

Wednesday night was a turning point, a coming out party, a statement game – call it what you will. I’ve been critical of the club captain in the past, and in a lot of ways I didn’t think he was capable of a State of Origin performance like that, but Robbie Farah is a genuine superstar. He tackled himself to a standstill and turned back the clock to a bloody Origin battle from 20 years ago.

When Farah got a nasty head cut attended to I was waiting and hoping for the trainer to reach for the green electrical tape. It didn’t happen, but I bet Benny Elias was smiling all the same. Bandages aside, the only thing missing was a postgame hug and kiss from Sonia Farah, who sadly couldn’t be at the game.

So the dust has settled on a 63-tackle game and the Tigers are returning to Leichhardt Oval. I can’t begin to imagine the atmosphere that will greet the players as they run out onto the ground. A favourite son will back up after making history and the Tigers are out to equal history. Despite the very real risk of tempting fate, this one has all the makings of an old-fashioned touch up.

<^TigerBrad^>

2012 – Round 15 – Tigers vs Roosters

Preview:

wests tigers game previewFollowing our win over the premiership leaders, the Wests Tigers head into a grudge match with the Sydney Roosters on Sunday afternoon. While the Tigers are shooting to equal the club record of eight straight wins, the Chooks are struggling recording only one win over their last seven games.

Despite missing 35 tackles against the Storm, the Tigers scrambling defence was impressive last week, limiting the hosts to just one try (and a controversial one at that). While we’ve been impressive in the wet-weather over the last two weeks, Wests get a repreive from the rain and will play in dry and sunny conditions on Sunday afternoon at Leichhardt.

The Roosters are a very direct team and play predominantly up the middle. This week they’ll be running right into the path of our massive props, Woods and Galloway, and recently crowned Origin-superstar Farah. Tiger fans either side of the border must have been brimming with pride on the back of his tireless efforts on Wednesday. I’m a Blue so I’m obviously biased, but taking into account what was said and written about Robbie in the lead up to this series, that has to go down as one of the most couragous individual performances in Origin history for mine. Regardless of how many minutes Farah gets on Sunday, he’ll be up for a big performance and the home-coming to Liechhardt will only lift the entire team.

Our structure has looked very strong since the Sironen’s promotion to first grade a few short weeks ago and his medium-term absence represents a real risk to disrupting our current run of form. At the time of writing, Sheens has yet to make an announcement on who will replace Curtis at 5/8. Shifty has many and varied options at his disposal, ranging from a straight selection of Ayshford from the bench to 5/8, or a convoluted game of back-line musical chairs.

We’ve only won once in our last five attempts against the multi-colours, but we’re short-priced favourites this week. Sunday roast chook all ’round!  Go Tigers!

Fortune-Teller:

FTS: Based on Adam Blair’s busy performance last week, I’ll back him to register the first try of the game.
Margin: There’s no doubt in my mind our winning streak will continue on Sunday. Wests by 18 (28-10).

BWTF Players of the Week:

Thanks to everyone who voted. Players who collected the most votes in each category for Round 14 were:

Best Back/Utility: Ryan (87%) [34/39]
Best Forward: Blair (49% of votes) [21/43]

Here’s an update of the BWTF player polls so far:

Best Backs
Ryan (7.5 awards)
Marshall (4.5 awards)
Humble (1 award)

Best Forwards
Woods (7 awards)
Fulton (2 awards)
Farah (2 awards)
Ellis (1 award)
Blair (1 award)

Ryan wins a whopping 87% of votes for Best Back. What a legend! Blair gets on the board with by far his best performance in Tiger colours, earning the nod for Best Forward from nearly half of voters.

Links for the Round 15 polls will be posted on Facebook after the Channel 9 delayed telecast.

<^OneEyedTiger^>