The final shortened round of the year saw six games take place with some interesting results. The Raiders toppled the Dragons in golden point, the Panthers beat the Warriors in a high-scoring game, the Titans hammered the Sharks in torrential rain and a partially waterlogged ground, the Broncos worked hard in the second half to overcome a determined Knights, the Sea Eagles ran down and ran clear of the Tigers, and the Cowboys were too good for Souths.
Penalty Pullers Leaderboard
Jarrod Wallace joined the top 10 while Ryan James and Josh Hodgson added to their tallies in a reasonably quiet round for the most penalised players.
25 – James Maloney (CRO)
22 – Jared Waerea-Hargreaves (SYD)
19 – Mitchell Barnett (NEW)
17 – Josh Hodgson (CAN)
17 – Ryan James (GCT)
16 – Sam Burgess (SOU)
16 – Nathan Brown (PAR)
16 – Jarrod Wallace (GCT)
15 – Beau Scott (PAR)
15 – Will Chambers (MEL)
15 – Nelson Asofa-Solomona (MEL)
Jordan Rapana took the outright lead for most handling errors, while Tim Lafai, Kyle Feldt and Konrad Hurrell all fumbled one each.
26 – Jordan Rapana (CAN)
25 – Matt Moylan (PEN)
25 – Daniel Tupou (SYD)
25 – Josh Addo-Carr (MEL)
25 – Tim Lafai (STI)
24 – Kyle Feldt (NQL)
24 – Konrad Hurrell (GCT)
23 – Semi Radradra (PAR)
23 – Jack Wighton (CAN)
23 – Suliasi Vunivalu (MEL)
Perfect Goalkickers Ladder
Goalkicking was poor in Round 19, with 36 from 50 attempts successful at 72%. This was down on last weekend’s 80% but much better than at the same time last year, where 66.67% of goals attempted were good.
No results were reversed on the perfect goalkicking table this week with very little movement taking place.
First Half/Second Half Ladders
The two lowest-placed sides in the competition, the Tigers and Knights, are both performing very well in the first half, placing fifth and sixth respectively, but the drop-off in the second half is brutal. Despite the Sharks’ woeful performance in the rain on Saturday, they are still the best second-half team in the competition – but their first half efforts are the third worst.
Milestones achieved in Round 19
Martin Taupau (Manly) played his 100th career game on the weekend. The powerful prop began his career at the Bulldogs in 2010, playing only occasionally. After 21 games in 4 years, he moved to the Tigers and was a regular in 2 seasons, playing 45 games. He then shifted to Manly in 2016 where he has since played a further 34 games. He also has 1 test appearance for Samoa and 16 Tests for New Zealand to his name.
Matthew Wright (Manly) bagged two tries on Sunday which saw him surpass 200 career points. He made his debut in 2009 for the Sharks where he stayed for 5 years, playing 62 games and scoring 60 points. He then spent two years at the Cowboys where he scored 72 points in 34 games. In 2016 he moved to Manly and has scored a further 74 points in 22 games, now boasting a career tally of 206 from 36 tries and 31 goals. He has also played 3 tests for Samoa, scoring 10 points.
Kyle Feldt (North Queensland) brought up 200 points for his career, all scored for the Cowboys, with his try on the weekend. The part-time goal kicker began his career in 2013 and has played 63 games, scoring 41 tries and 18 goals for 200 points.
Milestones within reach in Round 20
Valentine Holmes (Cronulla) is just 3 points away from bringing up 200 points for his career, all scored for the Sharks. The 21-year-old began his career in 2014 and has scored 197 points in 70 games. He also has a 4 tries to his name from 2 Origins for Queensland and a further 2 tries in 5 Tests for Australia.
Luke Lewis (Cronulla) will become the 28th player in the game’s history to reach 300 career appearances when he takes the field this weekend. The ageless back-rower began his career with Penrith back in 2001 and after 12 seasons he had played 208 games, before moving to the Sharks in 2013. He has played a further 91 games in the Shire. Lewis also played in the Panthers’ 2004 World Club Challenge loss. His extensive rep career has also seen him notch 5 games for City, 17 State of Origin games for the Blues and 16 Tests for Australia.
William Zillman (Gold Coast) will become just the third player to rack up 150 appearances for the Titans if he plays in Round 20. He debuted at Canberra in 2006, where he played 24 games, before moving to the Gold Coast in 2009, where he has played 149 games.
Dale Copley (Gold Coast) will make his 100th career appearance this weekend. He began his career with the Broncos in 2009, playing 72 games before moving to the Roosters in 2016. He made 14 appearances at Bondi and then relocated again to the Titans where he has made another 13 appearances.
Trent Hodkinson (Newcastle) will reach game number 150 this weekend. He started his career at Manly in 2010, playing 24 games, before lining up with the Bulldogs for the next 5 years, playing 92 games. He then shifted to the Knights last year and has played a further 33 games. He has also played 1 game for City and 6 Origin games for New South Wales.
Michael Morgan (North Queensland) needs one more try to bring up 50 in his career and 200 points, all scored for the Cowboys. He made his debut in 2010 and has played 116 games. He has also played 7 Origins for Queensland for 4 points and 7 Tests for Australia for another 4 points.
Josh Dugan (St.George-Illawarra) will bring up game 150 when he runs out this weekend. The talented fullback and centre made his debut with the Raiders in 2009 and after 5 years and 70 games, he moved to the Dragons and has played a further 79 games. He has also played in a World Club Series game for the Dragons, 2 games for Country, 12 Origins for the Blues and 7 Tests for Australia.
Russell Packer (St George-Illawarra) will make his 150th NRL appearance this weekend. The big forward started out with the Warriors in 2008, playing 110 games up until 2013. After spending a year in jail for assault and a further year in the lower grades, he returned to the NRL with the Dragons in 2016 where he has played a further 39 games. He also has 1 appearance for the Maori side in 2010 and 3 Tests for New Zealand.
Michael Gordon (Sydney Roosters) is just 6 points away from becoming the 20th player in the history of the game to reach 1500 career points. He started out at the Panthers in 2006, where he scored 798 points in 7 seasons before spending three years at the Sharks, where he scored a further 400 points. He scored 162 points in his only season at Parramatta in 2016 and already has 134 points at the Roosters this year. He has also scored 10 points for Country and 6 points for the Blues.
Issac Luke (Warriors) needs 4 more points to reach 500 for his career. The cheeky rake started his career in 2007 with the Rabbitohs, where he stayed until 2015 and scored 412 points. Upon moving across the ditch he has scored a further 84 points in 36 games for the Warriors. He has also scored 58 points in 40 Test matches for New Zealand.