Another week of NRL action and another week with plenty of talking points. Billy Slater returned in the Storm’s tight win against the Broncos, the Bulldogs and Titans put in much-improved efforts to break through for their first win of the season, while the Sea Eagles and Raiders blew their opponents off the field to break their duck eggs.
The Knights showed plenty of character despite going down to Souths and the Roosters undefeated run continued against the Panthers. The round closed out with defending premiers the Sharks unable to find their groove against the Dragons.
A total of 92 players were penalised in Round 3, with Sharks enforcer Paul Gallen pulling clear of the field on the penalty pullers leaderboard.
Penalty Pullers Leaderboard:
6 – Paul Gallen (CRO)
5 – Iosia Soliola (CAN)
5 – Josh Hodgson (CAN)
5 – James Maloney (CRO)
5 – Leivaha Pulu (GCT)
5 – Ryan James (GCT)
5 – Jake Trbojevic (MAN)
5 – Brenton Lawrence (MAN)
5 – Beau Scott (PAR)
5 – Mitchell Pearce (SYD)
4 – Johnathan Thurston (NQL)
4 – Tyrone Peachey (PEN)
4 – Josh McCrone (STI)
Goalkickers missed just 8 of 61 goal attempts in Round 3 in a stunning display. Their 86.89% success rate in Round 3 is up from the 70.37% in Round 2, and 75.86% in Round 3 last year. So far this year there have been 12 more goals kicked than last season from just 2 more attempts.
On the perfect goalkickers ladder (where all attempted goals are kicked every week), there were no changes in results. The Cowboys are the most heavily impacted side thanks to their Round 2 victory over the Broncos being overturned. This has seen them drop from sixth down to 14th. That result has also seen the ninth-placed Broncos moved into fifth spot.
MILESTONES ACHIEVED IN ROUND 3
Darius Boyd (Brisbane) played his 250th career game against the Storm. Boyd began his career with the Broncos in 2006 before he followed coach Wayne Bennett for three-year stints at St George Illawarra and Newcastle. He returned to Brisbane in 2015. He’s played 119 games for Brisbane, 69 for the Dragons and 62 for the Knights, while also playing 26 games for Queensland and 22 Tests for Australia.
From the shy kid to captain of the Brisbane Broncos.
— William Hill Aus (@WillHillAus) March 16, 2017
Simon Mannering equalled Stacey Jones club record for most appearances for the Warriors, playing his 261st game since debuting in 2005. Mannering has also scored 58 tries for the Warriors – fourth on the club’s all-time register.
Greg Eastwood (Canterbury) played his 150th game for the Bulldogs on the weekend. He began his career at the Broncos in 2005 and after 64 games in 4 seasons, he moved to the Bulldogs where he has picked up a further 150 appearances. He’s also played 26 Tests for New Zealand.
Dylan Walker (Manly) reached 200 career points with the first of his 7 goals against the Cowboys. He began his career at Souths in 2013 and scored 33 tries and 2 goals for 136 points. He then moved to Manly last year and has since scored 8 tries and 22 goals for 76 points. He played an extra game for Souths in the World Club Challenge where he scored a try and has also played a game for City and 4 Tests for Australia in 2014 as well as 2 Origin games for NSW last year.
Kane Linnett (North Queensland) brought up his 150th game in the Cowboys loss to Manly. He began his career for the Roosters in 2010. After two seasons and 23 games for the Bondi side, he headed north and has played 127 games for the Cowboys. He has also got an appearance for Country last year as well as 6 Test matches for Scotland under his belt.
Robbie Farah (Souths) played his 250th career game when he ran out for Souths against the Knights. After beginning his career in 2003 at the Wests Tigers, he played a record 247 games for the club before moving to Redfern for the 2017 season, where he has played 3 games for Souths. He’s also played 6 games for City, 16 Origins for New South Wales, 1 game for Lebanon in 2002 and 8 Tests for Australia.
— Sportsbet.com.au (@sportsbetcomau) March 18, 2017
MILESTONES WITHIN REACH IN ROUND 4
Darius Boyd (Brisbane) needs one try to bring up 300 points in his career. Boyd has scored 44 tries in 119 games for the Broncos, 13 tries in 69 games for the Dragons and 17 tries in 62 games for the Knights.
Andrew McCullough (Brisbane) will bring up his 200th career game this week. After starting his career in 2008 when he played 3 games, he has played at least 21 games in each of his seasons since. He holds the unique record of being the first player to play in the NRL who was born in the 1990s.
Jarrod Croker (Canberra) returned from injury last week and scored a try and 7 goals in the Raiders annihilation of the Tigers. He now has 99 tries for the Raiders and needs one more to join Jason Croker and Brett Mullins in the 100 club for the Green Machine.
Brett Morris (Canterbury) will run out for his 200th career game this week. He made his debut in 2006 for the Dragons where he played for 9 seasons and a total of 169 games before shifting to the Bulldogs to link up with his twin brother Josh in 2015. He has played 30 games for the blue-and-whites. He’s also played 1 game for the Dragons in the World Club Challenge, 1 for Country, 12 games for the Blues in Origin and 18 tests for Australia.
Simon Mannering (Warriors) will take sole ownership of the club appearances record he currently shares with former teammate Stacey Jones when he runs out to take on St George Illawarra this weekend. Mannering has missed just 16 games in the past 10 seasons, while he has also represented New Zealand 30 times.
Daly Cherry-Evans (Manly) will make his 150th NRL appearance for Manly this weekend. He began his career with Manly back in 2011 where he has stayed ever since. He has played another game for Manly in the World Club Challenge in 2012 as well as 6 State of Origin games for the Maroons and 11 tests for Australia.
Daniel Tupou (Sydney) will play his 100th career game this weekend. The winger made his debut for the Roosters in 2012. He has played an extra game for the Roosters in the World Club Challenge in 2014 as well as 2 games for City, 4 Origins for NSW, 3 Tests for Tonga in 2013 and 1 Test for Australia in 2014.