Penrith Panthers v Manly Sea Eagles
Ethan Bullemor got his price rises rolling in a less than convincing performance that was bolstered by Manly’s lone try. Luckily they don’t play Penrith every week so hope for an improved performance in Rd2. Tom Trbojevic had a rough start with about 19% coaches wishing they’d opted for a different captain choice but will likely be an excellent buy at a discount in a few weeks for those who went without. Meanwhile his brother, Jake Trbojevic put up a very solid 56 and could be an early sign that he’s back to his 2020 plodder powers. The big fantasy options Stephen Crichton & Izack Tago go there price rises moving quickly with both scoring a try and putting up big scores. If you missed them, get them in!
Canberra Raiders v Cronulla Sharks
Nicho Hynes got his scoring off to a solid start posting a 53. Cronulla struggled for possession in the first half so I’d expect this to only improve. Brad Schneider also posted a solid 44 point score and should be a reliable top 17 scorer for as long as he holds the goal kicking duties. Teig Wilton rewarded owners who went with him scoring a try and top scored for the game with 68. Owners who started with Tom Starling got some luck with Josh Hodgson going down injured early, however with the news he’s only out for 2 weeks Starling can’t be considered as a buy yet.
Brisbane Broncos v South Sydney Rabbitohs
Captain Haas. That’s the analysis.
Billy Walters & Albert Kelly both put in strong performances and now we’ll have to wait until Tuesday to see if Walters hold his spot. Jai Arrow had a great game and could be a potential keeper option if he sustains that many minutes each week.
Lachan Ilias time to panic? Maybe. He looked every bit the Adam Clune we thought he would and normally I’d say hold and don’t panic. He had a quite a few negatives that I’d expect to come down slightly and I’d normally expect an increase in attacking stats especially given their expected points were 21.66 and they only managed 4. However, things aren’t poised to get better quickly with Souths playing the Storm, Roosters and Panthers over the next 3 weeks. I’d consider selling if you have no other problems.
Sydney Roosters v Newcastle Knights
Billy Smith continued the poor cheapie performances posting only 5 points in 53mins before leaving the field due to a HIA. I don’t think the Roosters are going to be that bad every week and I’d continue to hold Billy for as long as he holds the centre spot. Some of our friends across the fantasy community got swept up in the Sam Walker hype and jumped on board only to be let down with a 26 point score. I’d jumping off ASAP. He’s the 3rd string option in this spine, essentially Lachlan Lam with goal kicking (and a poor one). The 60% of you who don’t own Chris Randall I can only assume are bots. Kurt Mann was also solid posting a 45 point score that was slowed down with a 10 minute stint at hooker due to Crossland’s sin binning.
NZ Warriors v St George Illawara Dragons
Euan Aitken was very impressive fantasy wise posting 56pts in mainly base stats in what was a fairly poor fantasy game overall. Elise Katoa and Jack Bird also put solid scores with each jagging a try. Viliami Vailea was very disappointing scoring only 7pts but at 240k doesn’t have far to fall. Every other fantasy option was largely unimpressive other than Josh Curran who was the stand out with 72pts in 66mins.
Melbourne Storm v Wests Tigers
Harry Grant & Josh King szn. With Brandon Smith likely gone for a month these two look the big winners with King looking a solid buy for round 2. Ryan Papenhuyzen looked great footy wise but only posted 44pts with Meaney taking the goal kicking duties in round 1 and now potentially longer with the injury to George Jennings. Christian Welch played big minutes and scored okay before another cruel injury ruling him out for most of the season. Awful luck for him and owners, sell. Kelma Tuilagi looks a potentially great cash cow scoring 38pts, the majority in the first half before the Storm controlling possession in the 2nd half slowed his scoring. Stefano Utoikamanu only played 50 minutes as predicted and is likely not going to produce long term value if that doesn’t improve especially with Tyrone Peachey playing huge minutes off the bench.
Parramatta Eels v Gold Coast Titans
Defence was optional here in what was a fairly poor fantasy game. Papali’i and Fifita were the only two players to hit 50 without a try which is fairly encouraging for future games. Sexton & Moses were both solid with scoring slowing down in the 2nd half. Junior Paulo was disappointing but if bought him I wouldn’t panic yet. Penisini posted a solid tryless 31pts which is encouraging for future games where he gets a try involvement. Sean Russell was a bright spot and on course to being the best cheapie back of the round before some Campbell knees to the ribs will likely see him miss a month.
NQ Cowboys v Canterbury Bulldogs
Battle of spoon featured two awful attacks but there were plenty of bright spots here. Jeremiah Nanai & Max King both were great and if you’re missing either get them in asap. Tom Gilbert was huge for the Cowboys and played big minutes staring on an edge and switching into the middle. Not sure this will continue once Cotter is back in the side but keep an eye on TLT. Matt Burton underwhelmed as predicted with only 38 points and I think the 32% owners could be in for a rough 2 months with the Bulldogs schedule getting considerably tougher until magic round. Jason Taumalolo was solid posting 46 points in 52mins but coaches (myself included) were no doubt hoping for more minutes. I wouldn’t panic yet as I think this could just be a fitness issue. Taumalolo didn’t play in either trial and had a disrupted pre-season due to a hamstring strain plus it’s still hot as hell in Townsville with plenty of players cramping up. It would be nice to see an offload though, hold for now and reassess in 2 weeks.