2018 Backline

Discussion in 'St George Illawarra Dragons' started by TomRedVRiver, Feb 8, 2018.

  1. TomRedVRiver

    TomRedVRiver Juniors

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    Our backline is always topic is one of much debate on this forum. I recent read an interesting article which highlighted a few things.

    Link to article - https://www.nrl.com/news/2018/02/07/euan-aitken-hoping-ben-hunt-helps-red-v-right-edge/

    A few things I observed from this article:
    - It looks like Mary is definitely going with split halves, Ben Hunt on the right, Widdop on the left (with a license to roam).
    Quote from article - "Hunt told NRL.com that while both he and Widdop would have a licence to roam, he expected to spend the majority of his time on the right edge, where he will also defend next to Aitken."

    - This is a quote from Ben Hunt - "Between him (Aitken), Friz and I think we'll have Nighty (Jason Nightingale) on our side as well so the more time we can spend together at training and practising our combinations the better it will be."

    Which means it looks like Nightingale will be making a switch to the right wing, Nene to the left next to Lafai.
    It also means that Nighty is going to be a walk-up start. He won't be replaced.
    It's also looking like Aitken is confident he won't lose his spot either, seems to think he is also a walk-up start.

    What are your thoughts on our backline for 2018?
     
  2. giboz71

    giboz71 Bench

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    All I know is, it’s suicide having Lafai and Nighty on the same side.

    Lafai adds value through his clever footwork and offload and has the ability to release his winger provided he has the speed to take advantage.

    Nighty can still finish as proven by his high try numbers last year (and our preference to go left) but most of the time he just fell over the line (0 long range tries from memory?) Mann looked a much better option at left wing as he had the speed to take advantage of the space Lafai provides (scored a great try against the Cows from memory?).

    Having Lafai and Nighty on the same side is effectively just 2 slow blokes together and will have quick teams like the Storm, Roosters and Parra salivating.
     
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  3. giboz71

    giboz71 Bench

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    Also, I said it elsewhere.

    Our best hope is Mann to left wing, Aitken to bench as back/forward utility and either Herbert or Lomax to eventually slot into right centre.

    If we can make that happen sometime throughout the year, I’d be stoked.
     
  4. watatank

    watatank Coach

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    Seems the main surprise is that Nightingale and MacDonald will switch sides. Rest was always going to happen, at least for the early rounds.
     
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  5. possm

    possm First Grade

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    Yep Aitken to make his way back to whichever position through hard work in reserve grade. Lomax to wing and Mann to centre for several first grade games and then Lomax to centre and Mann to left wing.
     
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  6. Crush

    Crush Bench

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    So Aitken has to make his way back through "hard work in reserve grade" yet Lomax who has never even played against men walks straight into first grade round 1?
    How about Lomax works hard in reserve grade for a while to force his way in?
     
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  7. AyiosYiorgos

    AyiosYiorgos Coach

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    No matter what we all want, the team for rd1 is already settled injuries withstanding
    Dufty
    Nightingale
    Aitken
    Lafai
    Nene
    Widdop
    Hunt
    that will be your rd1 backline..
     
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  8. hazzbeen

    hazzbeen Bench

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    Mann again will miss out because he is good enough to play anywhere in the back line , and better than some that play week in and week out ......
     
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  9. Redhoopz

    Redhoopz Juniors

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    Agreed.

    Although I am looking to see how Nene goes this year (McGregor won't drop him). Nene was a waste last year and was only used as a battering ram. Hopefully they use him better. If he didn't produce then I'd like to see Mann there
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
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  10. muzby

    muzby Village Idiot Staff Member

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  11. getsmarty

    getsmarty Coach

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    Every NRL club’s predicted round 1 line-up
    NRL Premiership
    • February 8, 2018 4:23pm
    • by Staff Writers
    • Source: FOX SPORTS
    [​IMG]
    Your NRL club's predicted round 1 line-up.Source: FOX SPORTS
    DON’T fret, rugby league fans.

    Another off-season is about to come to a close, and we’re just four weeks away from the new NRL season kicking off.

    So foxsports.com.au has jumped the gun and predicted all 16 clubs’ round one line-ups, complete with injuries and unavailabilities.

    Fingers crossed we haven’t put the mock on anyone.

    THURSDAY, MARCH 8

    St George Illawarra Dragons v Brisbane Broncos at Jubilee Oval, 7:50pm (AEDT)

    Dragons

    1. Matt Dufty

    2. Jason Nightingale

    3. Euan Aitken

    4. Tim Lafai

    5. Nene Macdonald

    6. Gareth Widdop (c)

    7. Ben Hunt

    8. Paul Vaughan

    9. Cameron McInnes

    10. James Graham

    11. Tyson Frizell

    12. Tariq Sims

    13. Jack De Belin

    14. Kurt Mann

    15. Leeson Ah Mau

    16. Jacob Host

    17. Luciano Leilua

    Unavailable: Nil

    Dragons notes: The Dragons should have a full fit squad for their blockbuster season opener with Matt Dufty set to win the No. 1 jumper. Tariq Sims is considered the frontrummer for the back row spot vacated by Joel Thompson, while Luciano Leilua is tipped to win a bench spot after impressing in pre-season.

    https://www.foxsports.com.au/nrl/nr...p/news-story/6dcae9d48488d87ae459d79060067f46
     
  12. Crush

    Crush Bench

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    Thats the team. If we can get Lafai, Aitken and MacDonald all firing that is a very strong lineup.
    My tip. Nene MacDonald will be a try scoring machine!
     
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  13. hazzbeen

    hazzbeen Bench

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    Crush potentially he can be damaging let's hope your right . with aggression attacking the line instead of just going through the motions as well as attacking the high balls with the mentality of winning it not just jumping because I have to ... . Well with Nene adding more tries to his list we might just get a semi spot , let's hope ...
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2018
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  14. RufusRex

    RufusRex Immortal

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    Lomax hasn't proven he is not up to it to the same extent Aitken has shown he is not up to it ;-)
     
  15. BennyV

    BennyV Coach

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    DAMMIT CRUSH, SHUT UP AND GET ON BOARD THE HYPE TRAIN.
     
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  16. BennyV

    BennyV Coach

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    [email protected] bench.
     
  17. 2010

    2010 Bench

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    Seeing how McIdiot used the bench last year and how long it took him to give Duffy a spot in the team. I don’t see many changes to the team till the second half of the season. But hope I am wrong
     
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  18. hazzbeen

    hazzbeen Bench

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    2010 I hope you are wrong , as I am thinking the same but I dont like our chances of that happening ......
     
  19. slippery5

    slippery5 Juniors

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    Barring injury.
    I always thought there was a lot of similarities in your profile picture to our great coach, your secret is out.
     
  20. possm

    possm First Grade

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    'Jack Bird Mentality'. The fact is that Lomax has trained the house down and has been tagged by Fittler as something special. All that needs to be done is to compare his off-season efforts and stats with the likes of Aitken, Macdonald and Nightingale. If he falls short he comes through reserve grade if his results are superior, he is selected in first grade. If you keep selecting the same players who have the same skill shortfalls as seen last season, you will get the same result or worse.
     
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