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Rumours and Stuff


Post Whore
I’m neither affirming or denying their advantages.
I’m asking what they are. I think it’s a cop out to say we haven’t won a competition in 35 years because the Roosters and Storm have advantages when other clubs with less resources than us have won.
As to why they’ve been so successful I’d say Melbourne are good at identifying a core group of players and constructing a team around them. When you look at how they play, they always seem well coached and drilled in how they execute their game plan. I don’t get that from our team.
As for the Roosters they’re ruthless in how they construct their team by aggressively targeting the best players and demanding success. Look at what they’ve done over the years with the likes of Fittler, Tedesco, SBW, Cronk etc. They don’t tolerate mediocrity for very long either. Brian Smith took them to a grand final in 2010 and was gone two years later when they finished 13th. Brad Fittler was one of their prodigal sons and finished 6th in 2008 and was gone after he finished with the wooden spoon in 2009. Our soon to be longest serving coach is yet to make a grand final.
He’s also yet to make a prelim.


Sorry but I do, I think is ridiculous the club is even thinking about it. If it was 2019 it would be a no brainer but he’s not that player anymore and the game is different it’s built around speed. The top 3 teams this year all had speed from dummy half. The Storm had two of them and we are chasing a 33 year old who’s busted with his best days well and truly passed hm. You even say yourself you wouldn’t commit to him this far out so I’m not sure what we are arguing about.
Another bullshit story but still getting the clickbait.


👍Ok. Hes got gradually worse. Lol. I seriously doubt Ennis, Mary, Carr, Kids and Murfs have much say in The Eels recruitment plan but you never know. We live in hope Rammy.

I don't think that they have any major say if any at all mate. But we may have been thinking of Hodgson and since we have someone that used to train him, we may have asked his opinion and Ennis may have given him a glowing endorsement. Just speculation on my part, but not an outrageous one. I know if I was thinking of signing someone like Hodgson(God knows why) I would definitely ask around about him and since my club has someone that knows him well and coached him, there couldn't be a better reference really could there other then the blokes mother?

Just a thought.



Five rookies to watch at every NRL club​

Taniela Otukolo
: A 19-year-old hooker with three NRL games to date but has only just been upgraded to the top 30 squad. A real livewire with good skills and speed. Was a standout in SG Ball in 2020, scoring nine tries in six games, before the competition was cancelled.
Otukinekina and Valingi Kepu: We’ve seen the Burgess twins do it at Souths and the Saifitis at Newcastle. Now for the Warriors’ version. Twin brothers Otukinekina and Valingi both play in the middle and are on development contracts for next season but get upgraded into the top 30 in 2023. They’re extremely big boys from the south side of Auckland who have been pretty much playing alongside each other since Valingi made the switch from rugby in under 15s.
Jacob Laban: An athletic edge backrower regarded as one of the best teenagers coming through in New Zealand. Has just finished school and will join the top squad after Christmas.
Zyon Maiu’u: Another young backrower who has just finished school and is ready to join the NRL squad. Most Valuable Player in the NZRL under 20s competition last year. Skilful and tough.

Griffin Neame
: A big, red-headed prop from New Zealand who played Junior Kiwis a couple of years back and looks mean as hell. Started 2021 playing for the Blackhawks but by the end of the season had clocked up three NRL games and they won’t be his last. Had a blinder on debut against the Tigers and just continues to impress with his work ethic and determination. If he doesn’t make the round one side he won’t be far away.
Riley Price: Son of former Queensland warhorse, Steve, the 20-year-old can play in the middle or on an edge, but has had some cruel luck in recent years through injury. He did his shoulder towards the end of 2019 and didn’t play a game the following season. Came back and broke his collarbone. But he is a promising talent who has shown enough to be locked in for two more years.
Jeremiah Nanai: An exceptional 18-year-old backrower who promises to be a standout for years to come. Came through in that Kirwan State High team that won the schoolboys competition and was only 16 at the time, then was only 17 when called up to train with the top squad last pre-season. While he wasn’t even on the development list in 2021, he ended up playing the final four NRL games and was outstanding.
Iosefo Masikau: A Fijian Rugby Sevens Olympic gold medallist, extremely athletic and fast. At 23, has had very limited rugby league experience. But if he adapts to the changes, could be a real excitement machine. Taniela Sadrugu is the other Fijian rugby product trying to make the switch at the Cowboys as a forward and is also impressing at pre-season training.
Jake Bourke: An Ignatius Park College product who is an organising-style half and plays with great maturity. Has been a gun coming through the grades and will do the pre-season with the top squad before going back to the young guns program. But one to keep an eye out for.

Sean Russell
: Still only 19 with two NRL games in the bag. But Maika Sivo’s ACL injury (Sivo is expected to miss up to 15 rounds) has opened the door for Russell to get plenty more at the start of 2022. Keeps growing and that taste of top grade is said to have really stoked the fire in him.
Sam Loizou: Came through playing in the halves alongside Jake Arthur but will end up in the centres. Was fairly slight when he came into pre-season last year but is starting to get his body right. Has played one first grade game off the bench in that late season belting by Penrith when Brad Arthur rested a stack of players. But this 18-year-old is very athletic and has the skills to make a very good career when he gets a bit more experience.
David Hollis: A bit of an old-school prop from Wauchope on the mid-north coast who has done an apprenticeship as a diesel mechanic but is now not far away from getting a shot in the engine room in NRL. Only 21 next year but they’ve had raps on Hollis at Parra for a while now, and all you continue to hear is good things.
Jock Brazel: A backrower from Moree who made the Australian Schoolboys and has been locked into a three-year deal. Given he’s only just turned 18 and the Eels have some strong competition in the back row, you’d expect he has some hard yards to do before he’s ready to challenge for an NRL spot. But club recruitment boss Ben Rogers says Brazel is a name Parra fans might want to keep a close eye on.
Solomone Naiduki: Powerful Fijian winger who the Eels have a high opinion of. At 21 has now moved into the top-30 squad and could get some early chances with Maika Sivo’s injury.

Lindsay Smith
: Former Australian Schoolboy from Westfields who plays in the middle and lives for his footy. At 20, made his NRL debut against the Tigers in round 13 and it won’t be his last.
Sunia Turuva: An outside back with obvious athleticism but also has real feel for the game. The type of fullback who is always ready to seize the moment. His popularity was highlighted this year when Ivan Cleary spoke so beautifully about what he means to the club after Sunia’s mother died suddenly. Played his junior footy for the Berala Bears and St Marys.
Thomas Jenkins: A 20-year-old who can play anywhere in the outside backs. Born and bred in Boorowa and played for the Young Cherrypickers. Went home during the Covid shutdown last year to play for his local first grade team but returned to play Jersey Flegg and NSW Cup in 2021, earning himself a new two-year contract extension.
Mavrik Geyer: Son of Mark who also plays in the backrow and is making his way with a minimum of fuss, but has been very impressive. Probably not as tall as his old man but quick on his feet and can lay on a try. Has really stood out in Jersey Flegg.
Niwhai Puru: A 19-year-old five-eighth who plays like he’s been cut from the same cloth as Jarome Luai. A local Windsor Wolves junior who looks really sharp and loves running the ball. Played Jersey Flegg in 2021 and has been called up to join the NRL squad for six weeks of pre-season.



Ezra Mam
: Ben Ikin has a huge rap on this teenager who grew up playing street touch with his cousins Edrick and Brenko Lee. Ezra played in the halves for Souths Logan Magpies in 2021 and was the Q Cup’s rookie of the year. Super exciting ball-playing, ball-running half who is also a very solid defender. While he’ll be pushing it to start the season ahead of the likes of Tyson Gamble, Albert Kelly and Billy Walters, they reckon by the end of 2022 Ezra could easily have a permanent home outside Adam Reynolds in the Broncos’ starting halves.
Brendan Piakura: This is the boom backrower the Bulldogs went hard for before the Broncos handed him a three-year deal worth a reported $1.2m. Though his much-hyped NRL debut didn’t go exactly to plan when he was binned for a late shot on young Cronulla playmaker Braydon Trindall after Piakura was on the field for just six minutes. Has the potential to be an out-and-out NRL star.
Blake Mozer: Still only 17 but a dummy half who stands six foot in the old scale and those who have watched him closely reckon he has a Cameron Smith style about him the way he can size up the opposition in the blink of an eye. Came through Keebra Park and also has good speed. Might be two or three years off NRL.
Xavier Willison: Only 19 but the former Palm Beach Currumbin captain has already played three NRL games in the front row and has extended his contract until the end of 2023. A big talent but equally impressive is the way he rolls up his sleeves for hard work.
Benjamin Te Kura: Teenage backrower with a huge future ahead of him. Tall and rangy, he was named in the Queensland 16-18 years team and the Broncos rate him up with the best young players coming through.

Brad Morkos
: An Illawarra junior who was a member of that gun SG Ball team that won the comp alongside the likes of Tyrell Sloan, Talatau Amone, Jayden Sullivan and the Feagai twins. There were plenty of raised eyebrows when the Raiders snuck in and pinched the Australian Schoolboy who also played NSW 18s. Plays in the centres, has good balance and speed and it wouldn’t surprise to see him get an NRL start at some stage next season.
Adrian Trevilyan: This is the youngster Peter Mulholland signed from Kirwin State High in Townsville that Andrew Voss rated the best schoolboy hooker he’s ever called, which dates back to the early 1990s. Like a lot of the youngsters his development has suffered from not playing enough footy during the Covid shutdown, but will be challenging for the No.9 NRL starting jumper in the next 12 months.
Trey Mooney: Still only 19 and was the best player in the Raiders’ SG Ball side that won the comp playing in the middle. Now they say the former Parramatta junior is seriously in the conversation to win a first grade spot in 2022 after being elevated into the top-30. Tough, dedicated and determined.
Harry Rushton: Another English recruit from Wigan who plays in the middle and still only 20. With a few of the Raiders senior forwards now gone there is a real opening for a couple of these youngsters to make their mark and Rushton will be right in the mix.
Brock Gardner: Another young forward who was a Newcastle junior and then went to South Sydney but had no luck when doing his Achilles last pre-season. Has ended up in Canberra and while the competition for back row spots is fierce, Gardner will be in the fight at some stage.

Paul Alamoti
: This is the Bulldogs’ version of Joseph Suaalii, and another young centre who also caught the eye of Nick Politis during the year. The story goes the Roosters’ godfather turned up to watch an SG Ball game and as luck had it got a seat right near Alamoti’s agent, David Riolo, as the boom teenager went about tearing the young Chooks to pieces. Riolo was adamant Politis was not there specifically to watch Alamoti but certainly walked away impressed. Nevertheless, Politis’ mere presence certainly sent a scare through the Bulldogs’ camp because at that stage Alamoti had only agreed to a new deal but had not signed it. That contract was finalised soon after.
Josh Stuckey: One of the most promising forwards in the Queensland Cup, this tall backrower from the Northern Pride was spotted by the Bulldogs playing at Redcliffe one day when the Pride played the curtain raiser before the Bulldogs. At 23 Stuckey is a late bloomer but was averaging close to 200m in the Q Cup and he can certainly find his way to the tryline.
Joshua Cook: Recruited from Souths where the 22-year-old was Damien Cook’s understudy. A talented dummy half who provides really good service and could easily end up challenging for the top hooking spot before the season is out. The fact Damien Cook is an 80 minute hooker didn’t help his chances of playing more NRL at the Bunnies.
Joseph O’Neill: Another talent to roll off Wayne Lambkin’s rugby league production line at Westfields Sports High, this young playmaker is still a while away from challenging for the NRL but all reports are he continues to impress with his talent and attitude. Ticks all the boxes for what you want in a young half. Will have to bide his time but in years to come O’Neill is one they say could be something special.
Khaled Rajab: The young five-eighth was the Bulldogs SG Ball player of the year. Has a good kicking game, can kick goals and is a danger with the ball in his hands, either running the ball or creating opportunities. Like O’Neill, one to remember for the future.

Franklin Pele
: A prop who came through in that Australian Schoolboys side that also had the likes of Bradman Best, Stephen Crichton and Tommy Talau, Pele made his NRL debut in 2021 but only played the one game before copping an injury that prevented him travelling with the team to Queensland. At his biggest tipped the scales at 135kg but has dropped a few kilos since. Should come right into the mix for a regular top 17 spot.
Jensen Taumoepeau: A Kiwi-born outside back who has been in the Sharks’ system for a few years but like a lot of the boom youngsters, has been held back by Covid. With good height and athleticism on his side, he’s in the top 30 now and it should be just a matter of time before he gets his shot.
Jonaiah Lualua: Another big, strong outside back who knows his way to the tryline. Looked a player of considerable talent in Jersey Flegg but he has some quality players ahead of him. In his favour is he is on the development list so will be staying with the top squad all season.
Kade Dykes: Yet another son of a gun whose old man Adam played more than 200 top grade games. Kade started at the Sharks when he was just 14 and is now on an NRL development contract. Initially played in the halves but his speed, footwork and acceleration has seen him shifted to fullback. Certainly knows how to sniff out a try.
Ryan Rivett: A Queensland recruit who was in the Titans system where it looked as though he might get stuck behind Toby Sexton so that’s why he took up the offer from the Sharks. Looks really impressive. Tall for a halfback and really slick on his feet with a good kicking game. Played SG Ball this year and would have pushed up into Flegg but had to go in for shoulder surgery.


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