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Rugby League Saints - 2017 - UPDATE

Discussion in 'St George-Illawarra Dragons' started by S J, Aug 30, 2016.

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  1. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    "I would think including your team mates in plays by passing them the ball is "fitting in" but FB is really a spot where individuals shine at getting the ball back up to rest of the side from broken play"

    Throwing one pass - a poor one - that is miraculously caught and then a try is scored - is not really that good. He rarely passes well and generally is a one off player. I'd prefer him in the centres and doing his thing there.

    Hunt is not a "star" in that way. He's not a "Benji" or "Hayne". He's a top half - solid - who fits in. He plays the team game and helps run them. Along with that he is perhaps in the top 3 - 4 halves in the game.
     
  2. stanleyg

    stanleyg Well-Known Member

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    At $6 million he had best be a star:cat: to offset all the financial drama his signing has triggered and Dugan has increased his workload considerably throwing at least FOUR passes in the shocker against the Eels whereas before you would have been more likely to have seen a blue moon than a Dugan pass.
    "rarely passing and generally is a one off player" is not the sort of player you need in the centres by any shot of the imagination unless of course you mean Matt Cooper who also rarely passes but was so wide an outside centre he could have been a winger.
     
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  3. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    [​IMG]
     
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  4. stanleyg

    stanleyg Well-Known Member

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    nice view. Now all that is needed is a full esky ad a fishing rod.
     
  5. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    Bribie Island.
     
  6. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    The St George Illawarra Dragons have been advised informally – but are yet to receive details – of a Breach Notice from the NRL relating to the management of an alleged concussion during the Round 3 fixture against the Cronulla Sharks.

    The Dragons have the upmost respect for player safety and fully support the NRL’s rules and processes in relation to concussion, as our track record would support.

    Equally, the Dragons support the integrity of our medical staff in their decisions and delivery of the NRL's procedures and policies.

    The club will await the formal breach notice details and will make no further comment until this process is complete.
     
  7. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    Illa Merc:

    George Illawarra have been hit with a $100,000 fine by the NRL as part of the biggest ever crackdown on clubs flouting concussion laws in the game’s history.

    Newcastle are also facing a $100,000 fine after allowing young fullback Brendan Elliot to play on despite clearly being wobbled in the Knights 24-18 loss to Souths on Saturday while Gold Coast were fined $150,000 for their handling of three separate incidents in their win over Parramatta on Friday.

    ----------

    Amazing the 3 Clubs selected ... ;)
     
  8. stanleyg

    stanleyg Well-Known Member

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    I guess the clubs will have to defend their actions ...or lack of them.
    Just because a player lays on the ground does not mean he has a possible concussion that needs to be assessed in the sheds.
    I have noticed a lot of clubs seem to be very keen to wheel some players off for a free interchange to get a fresh player on and you have to wonder if some of these are not genuine cases but in fact taking advantage of an opportunity in the rules.
     
  9. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    I'd fight the charges. Which doctor on the NRL board made the decision ? Which doctor at the ground diagnosed concussion on any of the players ? Are the Clubs medical staff incompetent ? On what basis does the NRL make their claim of concussion ? Is the NRL going to demand EVERY player involved in a heavy knock leave the field ? I could go on - but this is such a can of worms.
     
  10. stanleyg

    stanleyg Well-Known Member

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    [QUOTE="S J, post: 55265, member: - but this is such a can of worms.[/QUOTE]
    totally agree on this.
    The question is where do you draw the line.
    The Nrl seems to have adopted the policy better to be safe than sorry which is fair enough but it is a business where money and contracts are involved (just ask J Taylor)if you don't perform.
    If a player lays on the ground and doesn't move then its off to the head bin for a Dr to make an assessment which obviously cant be done on the field even by a Dr given that it takes a while.
    Basically anyone who cops a whack would have to go off so maybe the "whacker" whether intentional or not should also go off for the time it takes for the assessment.
    It follows on then that a lesser player might be a bit heavy in a tackle to give his side an assist.
    You also have non Dr's like Gallen wanting Dugan types off the field for obvious reasons.
    Also as I mentioned earlier you run the risk of some clubs ( whether the player is really injured ...or not)using the opportunity to make free short term interchanges

    Yes its a real can of worms and with Insurance companies involved it can only get worse.
     
  11. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    Illa Merc:

    ST GEORGE Illawarra have already claimed two major scalps in their 2-1 start to the season and, with a favourable draw, will have a golden opportunity to solidify their place in the top four over the next six weeks.

    Wins over genuine title-contenders Penrith and Cronulla in the opening three rounds see the Dragons sitting in third spot on the ladder at the front of a peloton chasing the two remaining undefeated teams Melbourne and the Roosters.

    They’ll host the out of sorts Warriors at Kogarah on Sunday ahead of clashes with a Tigers outfit, still reeling from the Tim Simona scandal and the sacking of coach Jason Taylor, and Manly who’ve been hit and miss so far this season.

    Most tellingly, the trip to the Northern Beaches in round six will be the furthest the Dragons will have to travel from their Wollongong training base over the opening 10 rounds. They face the Warriors in Auckland in round 11 with their first bye to follow in round 12.

    It’s in stark contrast to a horror draw to start the 2016 season that saw them log more than 12,000 kilometres over the first nine rounds.

    They opened their season against Melbourne at AAMI Park in round one and endured a horrendous sunshine swing in Queensland between rounds four and six that saw them take on 2015 grand finalists’ North Queensland and Brisbane away before briefly returning to Wollongong and then traveling to the Gold Coast to play the Titans.

    The Dragons haven’t managed consecutive wins since round 15 and 16 last season and haven’t won more than that on the trot since winning six games between rounds three and eight of 2015.

    That run had them sitting at the top of the table at the midpoint of the season and they’ll be looking to put themselves in a similar position this year given their run.

    It’s easier said than done given the wildly fluctuating fortunes of most teams over the opening three rounds. Having failed to back up their impressive round one win over Penrith seven days later, skipper Gareth Widdop said his side need to start stringing some wins together after outlasting Cronulla in a torrid encounter on Sunday.

    “We want to back it up each and every week and getting the two points, especially a local derby, we should take a lot of confidence out of that and we’re at home again this week,” Widdop said.

    “It’s vitally important that we do what we did [against Cronulla] really well and fix up a few of the things we need to work on.

    “After last week [against Parramatta] we wanted to get back to doing the tough stuff and the simple things well and I thought the forwards did that early on in the game and got us going forward.

    “Local derbies are always tough and physical and we knew it was going to be a tough challenge.

    “The pleasing thing was the defence on our try-line was great and our scramble was great.

    “We don’t want to put yourselves in that position too often but it’s certainly a step in the right direction and we can still improve for next week.”

    ---------

    Sort of start I mentioned a month or so back. We need about 7/10 games (65-70% wins) to make the 4. 16 - 17 wins. We've had 2.
     
  12. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    WHEN looking at the Dragons playing schedule at the start of the season, Kickoff thought the 6.30pm time slot was a recipe for large TV audiences and empty stadiums.

    Those fears appeared to be confirmed when a crowd of just 7,283 people turned up the Dragons’ round one clash with Penrith. Granted the weather was miserable and fans may well have read too much into form guides that painted the Panthers as title favourites and the Dragons as spoon contenders.

    The Dragons next two games in that time slot attracted very healthy crowds. Their round two clash with Parramatta saw 16,023 people pack WIN Stadium, the biggest crowd at the venue for an NRL match since round 10, 2013, while Sunday’s clash with the Sharks a Southern Cross Group Stadium attracted almost 15,000 people.

    It will be interesting to see how many people turn up at Koagarah on Sunday when the Dragons take on the out-of-town Warriors, but the Sunday evening slot may well prove more crowd-friendly than first thought.

    ----------------------------

    True to an extent - but we have won two games. This does make a difference to attendance. First game back at WIN would/should attract a good crowd.
     
  13. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    totally agree on this.
    The question is where do you draw the line.
    The Nrl seems to have adopted the policy better to be safe than sorry which is fair enough but it is a business where money and contracts are involved (just ask J Taylor)if you don't perform.
    If a player lays on the ground and doesn't move then its off to the head bin for a Dr to make an assessment which obviously cant be done on the field even by a Dr given that it takes a while.
    Basically anyone who cops a whack would have to go off so maybe the "whacker" whether intentional or not should also go off for the time it takes for the assessment.
    It follows on then that a lesser player might be a bit heavy in a tackle to give his side an assist.
    You also have non Dr's like Gallen wanting Dugan types off the field for obvious reasons.
    Also as I mentioned earlier you run the risk of some clubs ( whether the player is really injured ...or not)using the opportunity to make free short term interchanges

    Yes its a real can of worms and with Insurance companies involved it can only get worse.[/QUOTE]

    Fines might be suspended in part or some way ... ;)
     
  14. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    Illa Merc: ST GEORGE Illawarra coach Paul McGregor has leapt to the defence of his medical staff after the club was hit with a $100,000 fine as part of an NRL blitz on club’s flouting concussion guidelines on Monday.

    The sanction directed at the Dragons relates to the club’s handling of an injured Josh Dugan in last weekend’s 16-10 victory over Cronulla at Southern Cross Group Stadium.

    Dugan was felled by an accidental elbow from teammate Russell Packer in the ninth minute of the local derby, leaving him motionless on the turf. He remained down as he was assessed by head trainer Nathan Pickworth but was not taken from the field for a Head Injury Assessment.

    He subsequently played out the remaining 71 minutes, something NRL chief executive Todd Greenberg said left him “dismayed” as he watched on from home.

    McGregor said post-match that he received a report that Dugan had suffered a possible jaw injury while there were also reports in the aftermath that club doctor Tom Carrigan was unable to view replays of the incident due to a malfunctioning sideline TV.

    The Dragons are yet to formally respond to the breach notice but CEO Peter Doust told Fairfax on Thursday that the NRL risked medicos not wanting to be involved in the game if their integrity is constantly questioned.

    McGregor also staunchly defended his medical staff in addressing the media on Thursday.

    “The club’s still going through the process at the moment but I certainly, to the nth degree, back the integrity of my [medical] staff,” McGregor said.

    “I’m very confident in the process that my staff took. That’s probably all I need to say there because a lot’s been said and the process is still being fought out.”

    Gold Coast were slapped with a $150,000 fine for three separate incidents in their victory over Parramatta on Friday while Newcastle were also hit with a $100,000 fine for their handling of young fullback Brendan Elliot in their loss to South Sydney.

    Knights coach Nathan Brown called for an 18th man system to be implemented where concussed players are unable to return to field after failing an HIA.

    McGregor echoed the call of his former Dragons teammate, though he said such a move would need to be stringently policed.

    “I think it’s a great idea,” McGregor said.

    “It’s been mentioned before at the [NRL] coaches conference. Certainly it’s a part of the game that will be looked at more closely now with the regularity of interchanges being used because of the HIA.

    “I think it’s important it’s not abused though, and it can be. You don’t want the interchanges going back up because of a fresh person being there and them being used wrongly.

    “That’s not what the game’s about given the [interchange] changes that have been made in the game so I do support it but it’s got to be monitored pretty toughly.”

    While most coaches appear to be in favour of the move, Brisbane coach Wayne Bennett dismissed the need for the 18th man on Thursday.

    ‘‘How many players do you want on the bench?’’ Bennett said.

    “‘Where does it all stop? I am not pushing for 18 players. We will lose a player then another and people will say ’we need 19’, it’s like a piece of string - there’s no end to it.’’

    ---------------------------------

    I feel some teams are already abusing the system. Concussion miraculously occurs at the 20/25 minute mark of the game. Players are "concussed" by the ball hitting their head. Or when not even apparently hit hard in a tackle.

    I well remember the old blood bin - players suddenly had blood spurting from their mouths - again at certain times of the play - AND generally always forwards.

    Maybe anyone who goes off for concussion MUST miss the next game ?
     
  15. stanleyg

    stanleyg Well-Known Member

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    agree with Bennett on this. It is after all a contact sport not chess.
    the whole concussion thing is open to rorts and accusations as to the integrity of medical staff.
    Perhaps the NRL should pay for their own independent medical staff to attend all games and make the judgements.
    They can then join the on field coaches like Alfie running around the ground.
     
  16. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    Illa Merc:

    ST GEORGE Illawarra have long had the wood on the Warriors, but they’ll have a new ace up their sleeve on Sunday with the Dragons big men set to outweigh their rivals by almost 25kgs.

    The Dragons have a commanding record against the Warriors, having won 19 of 24 clashes against the men from across the ditch, but such an advantage in pure muscle has been a rarity.

    Albert Vete is the biggest Warrior, listed at 110kgs, with the rest of the pack under the 110 mark. In comparison, Russell Packer tips the scales at 121kgs with both Leeson Ah Mau (112kgs) and Paul Vaughan also 110 kilos or above.

    The added bulk has allowed the Dragons to play a power game against league heavyweights Penrith and Cronulla, with five members of the forward pack logging more than 100 metres against the Sharks.

    Vaughan contributed 176 metres and said his fellow bookends are certainly warming to the new style of play.

    “We have got a great forward pack with the likes of Russell [Packer] and Leeson [Ah Mau], Friz [Tyson Frizell] and Debs [Jack de Belin] and all those guys,” Vaugan said.

    “It’s one of the biggest things we’re trying to build our game around is that power game so hopefully it keeps working for us and the backs can play off the back of that and find a little bit of space.

    “The week before against the Eels we just weren’t completing and this week we held onto the ball. I don’t think any middle forward made an error in the whole game.

    “When you give yourself that kind of possession and that kind of quality ball you’re going to get a good number of carries in so it was good that the boys were punching through the middle. It was good to get the win and it’s good platform for us to build on.

    “It’s one of the biggest things the Warriors are renowned for, the aggression in their forward pack, so it’s obviously going to be a tough game in the middle this week.”

    Deemed surplus to requirements by the Raiders last season, Vaughan admits he’s come into his first season with a new club with a point to prove.

    “Yeah definitely. I just want to continue ripping in for the Saints because they’ve given me a great opportunity to come here and I just want to repay that faith,” he said.

    “I thought I started well, the second game against the Eels I wasn’t really happy with but two games out of three isn’t too bad.

    “I just want to contribute each week and build a consistent game. That’s all I’m really after. I’ll just try and build on that game last week and try and find some consistency.”

    Returning Warriors half Kieran Foran will no doubt come in for some attention from the Dragons pack, with coach Paul McGregor certain the former Kiwi Test captain will play on Sunday.

    “He’ll definitely play,” McGregor said.

    “He’s a very good footballer. He’s been out of the game a little while but he’s played a lot of footy so they’ll definitely be welcoming his presence back in their footy team.”

    ---------------

    Weight is all very well - but skill will beat it. This is seen time and again. Skill and weight however - is a match winner. Without errors of course ... ;)
     
  17. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    Illa Merc:

    HE hasn’t regularly steered an NRL side around the paddock for more than two seasons, but Josh McCrone is starting to feel right at home in the Dragons No.7.

    The former Raiders half is closing in on 150 NRL games, but has spent the best part of the last two seasons playing in a utility role, shifting between the halves, hooker and lock.

    His endgame however, was always a return to a fulltime halfback role. He’ll play four consecutive games there for the first time since 2014 when the Dragons take on the Warriors on Sunday and feels he’s starting ti find his groove.

    “I felt comfortable in my role [against Cronulla],” McCrone said.

    “Everyone wants to be starting in the team and I see myself as a half first and foremost. I’ve had enough experience doing it in Canberra with Campo [Terry Campese] there, so I’ve spent most of my career at halfback.

    “It’s a bit of a different system to what I’ve played in before but I’m enjoying it. It gives me more opportunity to run as well so it’s good.”

    McCrone noticeably took most of the kicking duties against the Sharks as he looks to take as much pressure as possible of skipper Gareth Widdop.

    “That right footer in the right side of the field is probably the easiest place to kick so I wanted to take control of that and just let Gaz think about playing his footy,” McCrone said.

    “When he can play a bit of ad-lib footy, get the ball in his hands and just run, things happen for him which we saw against Penrith where he scored a couple of tries. If I can take a bit pressure off him… wonderful.”

    ----------------------

    I want to see him against a top halves combo and forward pack - before I cast judgement.
     
  18. stanleyg

    stanleyg Well-Known Member

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    Good to see McCrone take some of the pressure off Widdop which in turn gives him more room to move.
    The Dragons tried it with Benchy but it didn't work out.
    Dragons might have the bigger pack this time around but I saw signs of the Warriors going back to an offload keep the ball alive game after a few years of trying to just outmuscle their opposition.
     
  19. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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  20. S J

    S J Mod Squad Staff Member

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    McInnes has really lifted them too. At dummy half and general play. He has taken a lot of pressure off Widdop.
     
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