1. Out Now: The Front Row rugby league magazine

    LeagueUnlimited.com is proud to launch a brand new weekly publication to accompany your footy weekend.

    This week, Joshua Wells speaks with injured Canterbury forward Joe Stimson as he works his way toward an NRL return next season, and we have a big double spread of the Rugby League Project's 'Rugby League Scorigami!

    EDITION 6 - OUT NOW!

    Guest, click here to read online or download your free PDF copy

Articles

Discussion in 'St George Illawarra Dragons' started by getsmarty, Nov 29, 2016.

  1. getsmarty

    getsmarty Referee

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2009
    Messages:
    24,051
    Likes Received:
    15,741
    [​IMG]
    Sailor in the thick of Dragons' fullback battle



    DRAGONS


    NRL.com predicts Dragons' Round 1 team
    Author
    Chris Kennedy & Jamie Soward
    Timestamp
    Sun 22 Dec 2019, 09:32 AM

    In a daily series analysing who will line up in each position for all 16 teams in the opening round of the Telstra Premiership in 2020, NRL.com looks at the St George Illawarra Dragons.

    NRL.com says: Zac Lomax has the inside running for the fullback role while re-signed youngster Tristan Sailor is likely to partner Jordan Pereira as the starting wingers with Jason Saab and Brayden Wiliame to keep the pressure on.

    Depending on what happens with lock Jack de Belin's trial over sexual assault allegations, the returning Trent Merrin is likely to slot into his old No.13 jersey for the first time in five years. Veteran recruit Issac Luke is a chance of a bench spot unless Paul McGregor opts for a bench of four middle forwards and edge back-rowers.

    [​IMG]
    Jamie Soward says: Tristan Sailor should be the fullback; he showed enough last year to be given first crack so Jason Saab and Jordan Pereira are the wings for me with Euan Aitken and Zac Lomax in the centres with Lafai out. I'd have Merrin starting at prop, Jackson Ford in the second row, Tyson Frizell at lock and James Graham playing that very important bench prop role.

    NRL.com's predicted Dragons round 1 team
    1. Zac Lomax
    2. Tristan Sailor
    3. Euan Aitken
    4. Tim Lafai
    5. Jordan Pereira
    6. Corey Norman
    7. Ben Hunt
    8. Paul Vaughan
    9. Cameron McInnes
    10. James Graham
    11. Tariq Sims
    12. Tyson Frizell
    13. Trent Merrin

    14. Korbin Sims
    15. Blake Lawrie
    16. Jackson Ford
    17. Issac Luke
    Others: Eddie Blacker, Jack de Belin, Matt Dufty, Jacob Host, Josh Kerr, Joe Lovodua, Mikaele Ravalawa, Jason Saab, Brayden Wiliame.



    Dragons
    Who will be their leading tryscorer in 2020?

    Dragons Who will be their leading tryscorer in 2020?
    • Zac Lomax
      0%
    • Brayden Wiliame
      0%
    • Euan Aitken
      0%
    • Tim Lafai
      0%
    • Jordan Pereira
      0%
    • Corey Norman
      0%
    • Ben Hunt
      0%
    • Jason Saab
      0%
    • Matt Dufty
      0%
    • Mikaele Ravalawa
      0%


    https://www.dragons.com.au/news/2019/12/22/nrl.com-predicts-dragons-round-1-team/
     
  2. getsmarty

    getsmarty Referee

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2009
    Messages:
    24,051
    Likes Received:
    15,741
    Paul McGregor to be sacked by mid-season

    The Dragons underwent an end of season review following their second last placed finish in 2019, but the head coach curiously escaped much of the blame for the horror season.

    McGregor called on close friend Phil Gould to conduct the review, which resulted in a shake-up of the Dragons’ backroom and support staff.

    Now McGregor is the last piece of the former puzzle and if the Dragons start slowly in 2020 there won’t be any scapegoats left to shield the head coach.

    The signing of Trent Merrin has gone some way to plugging the hole left by the absence of Jack de Belin and the Dragons still boast a number of Origin stars in Ben Hunt, Corey Norman and Tariq Sims on their books.

    However the Dragons still look light on in the outside backs and are probably a forward or two short and if they go on a losing run early in the season, the club may finally lose patience with McGregor.

    We can only hope...

    https://www.foxsports.com.au/nrl/nr...d/news-story/08099889812d9bf3b594ebd7312d6

    P.S Thanks dragsters
     
  3. getsmarty

    getsmarty Referee

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2009
    Messages:
    24,051
    Likes Received:
    15,741
  4. getsmarty

    getsmarty Referee

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2009
    Messages:
    24,051
    Likes Received:
    15,741
    Shaylee Bent's rapid rise to stardom
    Author
    Andre Cupido
    Timestamp
    Sun 29 Dec 2019, 08:00 AM

    Shaylee Bent has enjoyed a rapid rise to stardom in recent years and her 2019 has her well established amongst the representative arena and is closing in on a sky-blue jumper.

    A fearless back-rower with the versatility to play in the centres, Bent has been earmarked as one of the brightest prospects within women’s Rugby League despite playing for just the past three seasons.

    Bent started the year with selection in the Women’s Indigenous All Stars side before playing a pivotal in the NSW City Women’s Origin team who were victorious in the NSW Harvey Norman Women’s Championships.

    Her stunning early season form saw her named in jersey no.18 for the Harvey Norman NSW Women’s Origin side despite being just 18-years-old.

    NSW Women’s Origin coach Andrew Patmore spoke in the lead-up to the women’s State of Origin fixture and gave a high-appraisal of her versatility and skill set.

    [​IMG]
    “She showed exceptional form at the (Harvey Norman NSW Women’s) Championships playing on the edge, (but) can play centre as well.

    “(She runs) great lines, (is a) tough runner of the footy and just a quality all-rounder.”

    She finished the year playing a crucial role in the Dragons surge to the NRLW Grand Final and will certainly have her eyes on a sky-blue jumper in 2020.

    https://www.dragons.com.au/news/2020/01/02/shaylee-bents-rapid-rise-to-stardom/
     
  5. getsmarty

    getsmarty Referee

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2009
    Messages:
    24,051
    Likes Received:
    15,741
    Aussie Jai Field emerges as possible target for Leeds Rhinos
    AUSTRALIAN BACK Jai Field is a potential target for Leeds Rhinos, but only one of several possible options.
    [​IMG]
    By Peter Smith

    Wednesday, 25th December 2019, 12:10 pm
    [​IMG]
    Jai Field in action for St George Illawarra Dragons.
    Field, 22, is a free-agent after being released by St George-Illawarra.

    He can play in the outside-backs or as a pivot and Leeds have been made aware of his availability.

    “He is a player I know from my time at St George,” said Rhinos boss Richard Agar who spent the 2017 season on the NRL club’s backroom staff.

    [​IMG]
    Jai Field in action for St George Illawarra Dragons.

    “We have got a good rating on him, we think he is a good young player with a lot of years in front of him.

    “Tentatively we have spoken to his agent, but at this time we haven’t got a [overseas quota] spot.”

    Leeds’ Australian-born forward Rhyse Martin has applied for a Papua New Guinea passport and if that is granted it will – combined with the departure of Nathaniel Peteru earlier in pre-season – open up a quota space.

    But Agar insisted they have yet to make a firm decision on who they want to bring in.

    “We have got to weigh up what’s the best fit for our squad in terms of positions,” he added.

    “We think we need a utility-back and he [Field] would certainly fill that bill, but we also think we need a middle forward too.

    “We will make that decision when the spot comes and it might be a different decision in two weeks’ time to what it is today.”

    Only one of Leeds’ four new signings, scrum-half Luke Gale, has been named in the starting lineup for tomorrow’s Wetherby Whaler Festive Challenge against Wakefield Trinity at Emerald Headingley. Hooker Kruise Leeming (knee) and second-row Alex Mellor (groin), have been ruled out by injury.

    Australian prop Matt Prior is due to arrive before the new year, in time for a warm weather training camp in Spain.

    He could make his debut in Jamie Jones’ testimonial game – which is also a benefit for Rob Burrow – at home to Bradford Bulls on Sunday, January 12.

    The departure of marquee recruit Trent Merrin, along with nine other players who featured for the first team in 2019, has left Rhinos with space on their salary cap, but the club have insisted they are prepared to wait for the right player to become available rather than rush into a signing.


    https://www.yorkshireeveningpost.co...-emerges-possible-target-leeds-rhinos-1349412
     
  6. Dragonsamy

    Dragonsamy Bench

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2019
    Messages:
    2,737
    Likes Received:
    4,252
    Good luck to him if he goes.
     
    This Year? likes this.
  7. Old Kogarah Boy 1

    Old Kogarah Boy 1 First Grade

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2017
    Messages:
    5,415
    Likes Received:
    15,676
    Coaches under fire
    No coach is under more pressure in the early rounds than the Dragons’ Paul McGregor.

    This time, the de Belin situation can’t be held up as an excuse for a poor season.

    Last year, after just five matches, McGregor was re-signed until the end of 2021 without any performance clauses. The Dragons finished second last.

    [​IMG]
    Dragons coach Paul McGregor will be under pressure early this season.CREDIT:ROBERT PEET

    The signing of veteran players Issac Luke and Trent Merrin doesn’t overly excite the long-suffering Dragons fan, neither does the streaky form of halves Ben Hunt and Corey Norman.

    The Gordon family, which owns 50 per cent of the joint venture, already has a reputation for not wanting to spend a dollar more than it has to, but it will be under considerable pressure to sack McGregor and pay him out if the wins don’t come early.

    Every coach feels the heat but there will be sharp focus on Anthony Seibold at the Broncos (despite his long-term contract) and Paul Green at the Cowboys (considering the off-season signing of Valentine Holmes).

    https://www.smh.com.au/sport/nrl/ca...in-rugby-league-s-puzzle-20200101-p53o2g.html
     
    Dragonsamy and getsmarty like this.
  8. BLM01

    BLM01 Bench

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2016
    Messages:
    4,555
    Likes Received:
    6,626
    Mary is not under pressure.....he is beyond that. They wanted him gone but the lack of performance clauses and the $$$ to pay him out for 2 years is the only thing that saved him....then BJ resigns.
    No one will be under more pressure than the new CEO. They will start the interview process early this month. Interesting times. 2020 is a gap year for the Dragons to start once again...a rebuild that last time only got to footings stage.
     
    Dragonsamy and getsmarty like this.
  9. getsmarty

    getsmarty Referee

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2009
    Messages:
    24,051
    Likes Received:
    15,741
    [​IMG]

    NSWRL NEWS


    Jayden Sullivan a star in the making
    Author
    Andre Cupido
    Timestamp
    Fri 3 Jan 2020, 08:00 AM

    He’s been earmarked as one of the most brightest young prospects coming out of the Dragons in recent years and there is no doubt that Jayden Sullivan has the makings a Rugby League star in the near-future.

    The captain of the Illawarra Steelers UNE SG Ball side, who earned a thrilling premiership triumph in 2019, Sullivan oozes class and his skilful ball playing ability it second-to-none.

    In just 11 appearances for the Steelers this year, he recorded 10 tries, 13 try-assists, 10 line-breaks and 11 line-break assists, and put in a stunning performance in the Grand Final to ignite a thrilling second-half comeback over the Manly Warringah Sea Eagles.

    He played five games for the Dragons in the Jersey Flegg Cup at five-eighth where he laid on two tries in a promising start to his Under-20s tenure.

    He has sinced represented the CABE NSW Under 18’s and recently signed a three-year contract with the Red V which will see him start as a development player in 2020 before moving into the club’s Top 30 for at least the next two seasons thereafter.

    Dragons Director of Rugby League Pathways and List Management Ian Millward gave a glowing appraisal of Sullivan when the young gun was promoted to the first-grade squad.

    "This is a great moment for the Dragons with the signing of Jayden, especially when a number of clubs were in for him. He's an exciting prospect and everyone at the club are really keen to see him make the step up," Millward said.

    "Jayden has been in the club's plans for a long period of time and we feel he has all the qualities to be a successful NRL player. He's an outstanding attacking player with a great attitude. He has great vision and is a capable goal kicker as well.”

    Sullivan headlines a contingent for rising stars for the Dragons and will certainly use 2020 to lay a foundation for a lengthy and successful Rugby League career in the years to come.


    https://www.dragons.com.au/news/2020/01/03/jayden-sullivan-a-star-in-the-making/
     
    Dragonsamy likes this.
  10. Old Kogarah Boy 1

    Old Kogarah Boy 1 First Grade

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2017
    Messages:
    5,415
    Likes Received:
    15,676
    Only a winning start can save McGregor and the Dragons
    Neil Breen
    January 4, 2020 — 12.00pm


    Strap in Dragons fans, 2020 is your year – for better or worse.

    No matter where you search in this new year for NRL storylines, St George Illawarra is at the top of the pile.

    Yes, there will be drama we don’t know about, there will be refereeing turmoil, the Roosters attempting three in a row, the Maroons trying to rebuild and stop a potential Blues dynasty, a new chairman ...

    Hundreds of stories and storylines.

    But this year it’s all on the line for the Dragons.

    Advertisement
    [​IMG]
    Dragons coach Paul McGregor will be under pressure early this season.CREDIT:ROBERT PEET

    And it will begin in Wollongong Local Court on February 3 when star forward Jack de Belin stands trial on serious sexual assault charges. He has pleaded not guilty and the trial is expected to last two weeks.

    Last year the de Belin scandal derailed the Dragons’ season. The club and players stood by their man, believing he would be able to play despite such serious charges hanging over his head.

    The NRL introduced the "no-fault" stand-down rule, but de Belin challenged the rule in the Federal Court. Such was the club’s confidence that he would win the case, they fully expected him to join them in Mudgee for the round 10 clash against the Knights.

    When he lost, the players wanted to boycott the match. In the end they played and were belted 45-12. After that they spiralled out of control, avoiding the spoon only because the Titans were even worse.

    Advertisement
    The club just couldn’t see the obvious.

    It believed de Belin, like every member of society, was innocent until proven guilty. But the NRL was never going to allow him to play – until the matter was heard in court. Hence the stand-down rule, which allowed the presumption of innocence to exist despite a workplace suspension.

    To that end, the Dragons, and the players, were poorly advised and the wounds self-inflicted.

    [​IMG]
    Jack de Belin leaves Wollongong Local Court in July.CREDIT:AAP

    There will be no such de Belin excuses this year. The case will be over, either way, before the start of the season, the court having done the club a massive favour by bringing the matter forward a few weeks.

    Advertisement
    Try getting that favour done for you if you’re Joe Blow.

    The case somewhat shielded coach Paul McGregor last season. It gave him and club honchos an out.

    On the field things didn't pan out. Ben Hunt didn't do what they needed week to week. Corey Norman likewise. McGregor had no idea what to do with Matt Dufty – and still doesn’t.

    Trent Merrin returns and the only other big signing is Issac Luke to provide cover at hooker.

    Surely the pack will fire? Merrin and Luke are internationals and join Australia, England and Origin stars Tyson Frizell, Tariq Sims, Paul Vaughan and James Graham.

    Advertisement
    To have such talent on the books and finish second-last is appalling.

    McGregor and the club’s hierarchy have become lightning rods for the Dragons' long-suffering fans.

    [​IMG]
    It was a dismal season for the Dragons on and off the field.CREDIT:GETTY

    Chief executive Peter “Oust” Doust left at the end of 2018 after an 18-year reign. An expensive "international" search for a new boss unearthed the club’s very own chairman, Brian Johnston. But Johnston lasted a solitary season, and the search is on again. He’ll stay until the de Belin court case is heard.

    There was confusion when one of Johnston’s first acts was to grant McGregor a two-year extension to his coaching contract. This happened after round five when there wasn’t a lot to show for his efforts since taking the job in 2014 after Steve Price was sacked – and there wasn’t a line-up of clubs trying to pinch him.

    Advertisement
    McGregor's record now stands at 139 matches for 66 wins and 73 losses. Being a terrific, honest bloke has earned him relief from the ravenous rugby league media pack. He’s a popular and respected member of the league fraternity.

    He and the club have also benefited from the tyranny of distance. This may seem ridiculous, but being based in Wollongong means much less media turn up at the club. It can take more than half a day round trip to slog it out through the south of Sydney and back for press conferences. If they were based full-time at Kogarah, it would have been an almost daily onslaught during the past year or two.

    But now, in 2020, all the brownie points have been used up, and the excuses well and truly gone.

    If the club starts poorly, expect a pile on by Easter Sunday. That will be round five and the Dragons will be at home facing the Warriors after having played the Tigers, Panthers, Raiders and Eels.

    McGregor needs to be three-and-two on Easter Monday.
    ————————————————


    Quote - To have so much talent and finish second last, is appalling.
     
    Dragsters and getsmarty like this.
  11. BLM01

    BLM01 Bench

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2016
    Messages:
    4,555
    Likes Received:
    6,626
    So it is only now the mainstream rugby league media admit it has all been excuses that they have given McExcuse leeway for. Now they see what the supporters had been saying for at least 4 years.
    2018 season with Ben Hunt on board playing well early on and their start + finals appearances just gave Mc85 (by our blind board and short term memory media) the benefit of the doubt when the supporters all knew the real issues and cracks were covered over by a 8 wins out of 9 game start.
     
  12. Old Kogarah Boy 1

    Old Kogarah Boy 1 First Grade

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2017
    Messages:
    5,415
    Likes Received:
    15,676
    This may already been posted but just in case it hasn’t.
    Can’t post the whole story ( it’s from the Smelligraph)


    A41D92A0-73FB-45B9-85F5-8E70A856D513.jpeg
     
    Dragsters and getsmarty like this.
  13. getsmarty

    getsmarty Referee

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2009
    Messages:
    24,051
    Likes Received:
    15,741
    So much for McGregor telling everyone that Lomax gets 1st shot @ fullback...that being said it is the D.T...so take it with a grain of salt.
     
    Old Kogarah Boy 1 likes this.
  14. Dragsters

    Dragsters Bench

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2015
    Messages:
    3,575
    Likes Received:
    4,660
    Could be a blessing if Ramsey does get the no.1 as that should see Lomax at right centre and aitken left right out!
     
    Old Kogarah Boy 1 and getsmarty like this.
  15. BLM01

    BLM01 Bench

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2016
    Messages:
    4,555
    Likes Received:
    6,626
    So true 86..and Happy New Year to you
    But to be frank we should take what Mary says with a grain of salt and his opinion on whats best for the team is just....never mind :rolleyes:
     
    getsmarty likes this.
  16. getsmarty

    getsmarty Referee

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2009
    Messages:
    24,051
    Likes Received:
    15,741
    Won't Happen...Only time Aitken will not be in 1st grade is when McGregor goes....
     
    Old Kogarah Boy 1 likes this.
  17. Dragsters

    Dragsters Bench

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2015
    Messages:
    3,575
    Likes Received:
    4,660
    Hopefully by round 7 then...
     
  18. LINESPEED

    LINESPEED Juniors

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2017
    Messages:
    1,240
    Likes Received:
    2,823
    Mary’s mates are a threatened species

    - more spin from the M&M’s than a Chinese dryer

    Post Rd 7 it’ll be back to selling pies, the Red Devils & Dapto beer gardens for McGoner
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2020
    BLM01 and Dragsters like this.
  19. getsmarty

    getsmarty Referee

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2009
    Messages:
    24,051
    Likes Received:
    15,741
    [​IMG]

    NSWRL NEWS


    Only way is up for Maddison Weatherall
    Author
    Tom Gibbs
    Timestamp
    Mon 6 Jan 2020, 08:00 AM

    18-year-old Maddison Weatherall was one of the top performers at three different levels of women’s rugby league in 2019.



    After leading the Illawarra Steelers Tarsha Gale Cup side to premiership success with 17 tries, 27 line-breaks and an average of 12 tackle-breaks, Weatherall was given the honour of captaining the NSW Women’s under-18s in their 20-point victory over Queensland.

    By the end of the 2019 Tarsha Gale Cup, Weatherall was the season’s top try-scorer (10 tries) and was deservedly named the Dragons’ Player of the Year by coach Daniel Lacey.

    Her stellar year didn’t finish there, as she made her much anticipated debut in St George Illawarra’s Holden NRL Women’s Premiership side - reaching the competition’s eligible age cut-off just a matter of days before kick-off. Weatherall played in all four matches for the Dragons, including a maiden Grand Final appearance.

    As the Dragons’ rookie looks forward to 2020, Weatherall will have another opportunity to captain her Illawarra teammates as they aim to achieve a second consecutive Tarsha Gale Cup trophy.

    There is also no doubt the Weatherall can only improve on her 2019 form with more NRLW experience in the Dragons’ bid to avenge their Grand Final defeat to the Broncos.


    https://www.dragons.com.au/news/2020/01/06/only-way-is-up-for-maddison-weatherall/
     
  20. getsmarty

    getsmarty Referee

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2009
    Messages:
    24,051
    Likes Received:
    15,741
    [​IMG]
    Fuimaono on joining the Dragons



    SIGNINGS


    Dragons sign Fuimaono
    Author
    Dragons.com.au dragons.com.au
    Timestamp
    Tue 7 Jan 2020, 03:37 PM

    St George Illawarra have announced Tyrell Fuimaono has signed with the Dragons on a two-year deal.

    Fuimaono – who is capable of playing a number of positions – joins the Dragons until at least the end of the 2021 NRL Telstra Premiership season.

    The 23-year-old former Rabbitoh and Panther has played 26 first grade games to date and is a welcomed addition to the Dragons' Top 30 squad.

    The former Australian Schoolboy and 2016 member of the Holden Cup Under-20s Team of the Year commenced training with the Red V on Monday.

    "I'm very excited to get among this group of boys and I'm keen to seize this opportunity that has been presented to me. I'm very grateful and excited to be at the Dragons," Fuimaono said.

    "I'm looking to get back to my best footy and hopefully make my way into the NRL team. That's what everyone at this level strives to achieve; to become a consistent fixture in first grade will be really good for me."

    Director of Rugby League Pathways Ian Millward said he was excited to see Fuimaono don the Dragons' colours following an injury-disrupted previous two years.

    "Tyrell has faced a number of injury challenges in recent seasons, but with age on his side we're excited to see him hopefully reach his potential at our club," Millward said.

    "He is capable of playing in the back row and the centres which will be fantastic for the wider squad's versatility and depth.

    "With fellow young forwards such as Jacob Host, Josh Kerr and Jackson Ford pushing for first grade spots, Tyrell will add another dimension in the competition for spots leading into the season ahead."

    Fuimaono joins Trent Merrin, Issac Luke and Brayden Wiliame as the Dragons' recruits so far ahead of the 2020 season.


    https://www.dragons.com.au/news/2020/01/07/dragons-sign-fuimaono/
     

Share This Page