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  • Writer's pictureJonathan Turner

GameDay Squad Rugby League - Round 2 Team To Beat

Join us as JT puts on his general manager cap and selects his dream team going into round 2 of the NRL! He'll have the entire player pool to choose from, which should make selecting 3 winger/fullbacks, 2 centres, 2 halves, 2 edge forwards, 3 middle forwards and 1 hooker weekly easy right? Well, let us know who you agree with and who else you might have selected down below on all of our social channels twitter, facebook, instagram, discord.

J'maine Hopgood, James Tedesco and Nathan Cleary ahead of round 2 NRL fantasy

Winger/Fullbacks (WFB)

James Tedesco's legend GDS player card

James Tedesco

Sydney Roosters (Round 1 Rank – 28th)

Verses Warriors at Allianz Stadium, Sydney

Saturday at 2pm AEST

Teddy had a disappointing start to the fantasy season, scoring only 29 points against the Dolphins. He has been one of the best in his position for several years now and I’m expecting him to bounce back this week. With the Dolphins upsetting the Roosters last week, I’m expecting a much improved performance against the Warriors. Last season the Warriors allowed the fifth most points to fullbacks at an average of 45 points a game. Last week Lachlan Miller was able to score 55 points against the Warriors. I believe Teddy should be able to score 50+ points this week as it is a favorable matchup and the Roosters really need the win to get their season back on track.

Latrell Mitchell's platinum GDS player card

Latrell Mitchell

South Sydney Rabbitohs (Round 1 Rank – 2nd)

Verses Panthers at BlueBet Stadium, Penrith

Thursday at 8pm AEST

Latrell had a great start to the season and rewarded those coaches who had him in their squads as he scored 69 points. He was instrumental in the victory over the Sharks, kicking 5 goals, 1 field goal and setting up a try. This week the Bunnies will require a similar performance from Latrell in a tough match up against the Panthers. He has been carrying a knee injury which has hampered him at training this week but has been cleared to play tonight. Even with him carrying this knee injury, I doubt the Bunnies would be risking one of their main men this early in the season if the injury was serious. I’m expecting another decent performance from Latrell and believe he should score 45+ points, even against the Panthers. If he is a late exclusion from the Bunnies, Scott Drinkwater would replace him in my top 3 WFBs.

Dylan Edwards' silver GDS player card

Dylan Edwards

Penrith Panthers (Round 1 Rank – 7th)

Verses Rabbitohs at BlueBet Stadium, Penrith

Thursday at 8pm AEST

Edwards had a solid performance in round 1 against Broncos in tricky conditions and scored 55 points. What really impressed me was his work rate and support of the ball carrier. He lead all players last weekend in running metres and racked up 289 of them, 70 more than anyone else. With these sorts of numbers in run metres, he shouldn’t be overlooked as a starter for your squad. Last season Edwards averaged 222 running metres per game, so his performance last weekend was no flash in the pan. This matchup is shaping up as an arm wrestle and this suits Edwards game being a metre eater. Hopefully he can tick up a few more attacking stats and reward those coaches that choose to start him. I’m expecting Edwards to score 45+ points this week.

Centres (CTR)

Joey Manu's diamond GDS player card

Joseph Manu

Sydney Roosters (Round 1 – did not play)

Verses Warriors at Allianz Stadium, Sydney

Saturday at 2pm AEST

Manu missed the round 1 opener against the Dolphins due to a minor facial fracture and boy did the Roosters miss him. He had a great 2022 campaign and was the number one ranked centre averaging 49 points a game. The word is that Manu will be given a roaming role this year, this may cause many issues for defences and increase his attacking upside. Last week the Warriors did match up very well against the Knights centres and only allowed 31 points to Bradman Best and 16 points to Enari Tuala. The Roosters backline has stars littered throughout and will be a big step up for the Warriors. The Warriors probably won’t have the same success in this area as they did in round 1. Following on from his 2022 form, I’m expecting Manu to have another great season and I believe that will start this weekend. I have him scoring 45+ points.

Valentine Holmes' gold GDS player card

Valentine Holmes

North Queensland Cowboys (Round 1 Rank – 3rd)

Verses Broncos at Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane

Friday at 8pm AEST

Holmes had a good start to the season and scored 51 points in a close game against the Raiders. He had a solid game scoring 27 points in base and had no demerits. This week he will have his hands full coming up against Katoni Staggs, who can break a few tackles. I’m expecting Holmes to have similar base stats to last week but chalk up a few demerits in this matchup against Staggs. Like all centres, Holmes can be inconsistent. Going by last week’s performances of the Cowboys and Broncos, this one is shaping up to be a close affair and points may be hard to come by. Holmes is the Cowboys goal kicker and I feel that I must have him in my starting team this week due to his goal kicking upside. I have him scoring 40+ points.

Halves (HLF)

Nathan CLeary's legend GDS player card

Nathan Cleary

Penrith Panthers (Round 1 Rank – 5th)

Verses Rabbitohs at BlueBet Stadium, Penrith

Thursday at 8pm AEST

Cleary had a solid start to the season, scoring 64 points in the Panthers loss to the Broncos in tough conditions. Cleary is that sort of player that is almost a must start every week as he offers the upside of scoring over 100 points and rarely scoring under 50. The Panthers have now suffered back to back defeats at home against St Helens and the Broncos. I honestly don’t think we will see a third. Seeing Cleary after the game last week, he looked slightly angry and I wouldn’t be surprised at all if we see a master class from him tonight. I have him scoring 65+ points.

Adam Doueihi's bronze GDS player card

Adam Doueihi

Wests Tigers (Round 1 Rank – 4th)

Verses Knights at Leichhardt Oval, Sydney

Sunday at 4.05pm AEST

Doueihi had a strong start to the season against the Titans as he went onto score 65 points in a losing effort by the Wests Tigers. What really stood out to me is that Doueihi was never far from the action. He accumulated 44 points in base which is about right for a premium half but was able to feature in every attacking stat line, scoring 47 points in attack. What really let him down was his demerits, he racked up a whooping 26 points here as he had 6 missed tackles and gave away 2 penalties. With the Knights on deck this weekend, I like his matchup even more than the Titans and believe that he should be able to put similar numbers up across the park in base and attacking stats. If he can just limit his demerits, it may be wheels up for Doueihi this week. I have him scoring 60+ points.

Edge Forwards (EDG)

Isaiah Papali'i's gold GDS player card

Isaiah Papali’i

Wests Tigers (Round 1 Rank – 6th)

Verses Knights at Leichhardt Oval, Sydney

Sunday at 4.05pm AEST

Papali’i didn’t really look like he missed a beat from last season as he went on to score 51 points. Even with changing clubs, he was able to be one of top of edges in a clunky Wests Tigers performance. Papail’i had a solid base of 42 points, which is good for an edge forward. He didn’t offer too much in attack but with Koroisau named to start at hooker this week, I think we will see a better performance in attack by the Wests Tigers. Last week we saw Jackson Ford from the Warriors be a handful for the Knights down the left edge. Ford is no Papail’i in fantasy terms! We may see the Wests Tigers target this side of the field and Papail’i might have a day out. I have him scoring 55+ points.

David Fifita's platinum GDS player card

David Fifita

Gold Coast Titans (Round 1 Rank – 5th)

Verses Dragons at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium, Sydney

Sunday at 6.15pm AEST

Fifita had a solid start to the season and scored 52 points in a winning performance against the Wests Tigers. He looked to be more involved than he was last season as he put in an 80 minute performance and scored a very good 48 points in base stats. We didn’t see a rampaging run which he is known for, but he was able to chalk up a few tackle breaks. One thing that was a slight concern was that Fifita did seem to go missing at times in the second half and he did have 6 missed tackles. The Dragons play their first game after having a first-round bye and on paper they seem to be not as strong as they were last year. I think the Dragons may struggle this year and it showed in the Charity Shield how leaky their defence can be. I’m sure they would have worked on this over the last couple of weeks, but I believe the Titans can really exploit them around the edges and this may mean wheels up for Fifita this week. If Fifita can halve his missed tackles, I believe he may score north of 60 points. Until I see this, I have him scoring 55+ points this week.

Middle Forwards (MID)

Cameron Murray's silver GDS player card

Cameron Murray

South Sydney Rabbitohs (Round 1 Rank – 11th)

Verses Panthers at BlueBet Stadium, Penrith

Thursday at 8pm AEST

Murray was his usual steady self against the Sharks and went on to score 59 points. He accumulated most of his points through base stats and scored an impressive 67 points in base. Murray is an out and out gun with that sort of production. In another tough matchup for the Bunnies this week, I believe he will be close to this production again. In saying this, he did have to play the full 80 minutes last week due to injuries in the Bunnies pack and he may not play the full 80 tonight. If the Bunnies are to win, I believe Murray will need to be on the field for the full 80 as they are without both Tatola and Arrow this week. I think Murray is in for another huge game and I have him scoring 60+ points this week.

Payne Haas' diamond GDS player card

Payne Hass

Brisbane Broncos (Round 1 Rank – 5th)

Verses Cowboys at Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane

Friday at 8pm AEST

Haas has been one of the most reliable MIDs for the past couple of years and he didn’t disappoint against the Panthers as he went on to score 67 points. Like Murray, Haas is a base stat monster and 48 of his points were base points. One thing that did surprise me was that his tackle count was less than I expected. Last season in games of 60+ minutes he averaged 35 tackles a game, against the Panthers he only made 27 tackles. Up against their Queensland rivals tomorrow night I’m expecting to see his tackle count increase to 30+ while having around 200 running metres again. With his tackle breaking upside and offload capabilities, Haas is a gun and will likely be a starter in your side most weeks. I have him scoring 60+ points his week.

J'Maine Hopgood's gold GDS player card

J’maine Hopgood

Parramatta Eels (Round 1 Rank – 3rd)

Verses Sharks at CommBank Stadium, Sydney

Friday at 6pm AEST

How good was Hopgood last week! What a performance! There were big wraps on this kid before the season started but I didn’t expect a fantasy performance like that against an opposition like the Storm. He scored 71 points in his Eels debut with 74 points coming from base stats. He did however miss 7 tackles, and this took 21 points off his score. On the attacking front, he was limited here but was able to show that he has a good offload in him and was able to get 5 of these away. This week the Eels are up against another tough opponent in the Sharks, both teams will be desperately seeking a win after suffering round 1 defeats. With the likes of Matterson and Lane still out for the Eels, I believe we will see another 80 minute performance from Hopgood. With a gun-like work ethic I have him scoring 60+ points this week.

Hooker (HOK)

Damien Cooks legend GDS player card

Damien Cook

South Sydney Rabbitohs (Round 1 Rank – 3rd)

Verses Panthers at BlueBet Stadium, Penrith

Thursday at 8pm AEST

Cook has been an elite fantasy hooker for several years now and he showed us why against the Sharks as he went onto score 73 points. He accumulated 60 of his points through base points and this is generally the norm for Cook. There isn’t too much that separates Cook from Grant and Robson for me this week. For me it comes down to the opposition and what will be required from these individuals for their team to get the win. Cook stands out slightly because they are up against the defending champs in the Panthers, and he will need to play near his best for the Bunnies to get the win. I have him scoring 65+ points.

Fringe players that just missed out on the starting 13.

Scott Drinkwater WFB - North Queensland Cowboys

Nick Meaney WFB - Melbourne Storm

Zac Lomax CTR - St George Illawarra Dragons

Adam Reynolds HLF - Brisbane Broncos

Keaon Kolomatatangi EDG - South Sydney Rabbitohs

Isaah Yeo MID -Penrith Panthers

Reuben Cotter MID - North Queensland Cowboys

Reece Robson HOK - North Queensland Cowboys


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