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  • Writer's pictureJonathan Turner

GameDay Squad Rugby League: Round 27 Review

Will the biggest score of 121 points by Reuben Garrick be passed in the final round of the season? Leading into the GDS finals competition, is Crichton a must have? With a year under his belt at the Bulldogs, can Mahoney become a top 5 hooker again? There were so many questions coming out of round 26 and some of them were answered in round 27. But let's turn our attention back to fantasy footy for a second and identify some risers in form andothers who should be falling out of favor with all fantasy coaches in our GameDay Squad Rugby League: Round 24 Review. Let us know your thoughts on who we have down below on all of our social channels: twitter, facebook, instagram, discord.


Tolutau Koula – CTR, Manly Sea Eagles (132 points)

Just wow!!! What a performance!!! Koula produced the best performance out of anyone for the year as he surpassed his teammate Reuben Garrick’s season high score of 121 from round 15. In this performance he came away with 2 tries, 1 try assist, 3-line breaks, 2-line break assists and 17 tackle breaks on attack, this came to 95 points. On top of this he ran for300 metres and made 8 tackles, this came to 38 points in base stats. Koula was simply unstoppable and looked dangerous every time he touched the ball. He seems to be Manly’s fourth choice at fullback behind Turbo, Garrick, and Weekes but over the off season the Sea Eagles may consider a reshuffle of their backline. As we saw against the Wests Tigers, Koula is great with ball in hand and his best position does seem to be at fullback. If he was to earn the fullback job for the Sea Eagles ahead of the 2024 season, it would be wheels up as he plays under a centre position designation in GDS.

Stephen Crichton – CTR, Penrith Panthers (103 points)

The Panthers fired a warning shot to the rest of the teams in the finals as they comfortably dispatched of the Cowboys on Saturday night. There were many standout performances by the Panthers players, but Crichton’s performance really stood out. In this performance he came away with 1 try, 1 try assist, 1 line break, 1 line break assist, 13 tackle breaks and 4 offloads on attack, this came to 70 points. He also produced 30 points through the base statsof run metres and tackles. Crichton has now caught the eye of many GDS coaches, and he would be a solid option as a starter most weeks throughout the Panthers finals campaign. Next season he is off to the Bulldogs and there has been talk that he will have the first shot at fullback. If he was to earn this position over the off season, it would be wheels up as he plays with a centre position designation in GDS.

Daly Cherry-Evans – HLF, Manly Sea Eagles (113 points)

DCE may be just playing some of his career best footy on the field and in a fantasy sense. Inthis performance he came away with 1 try, 7 goals, 1 try assist, 3-line breaks, and 12 tackle breaks on attack, this came to 75 points. With the game being so open, his points through base stats weren’t as high as usual and he did lose 13 points through demerits. Over the lasttwo weeks he put together scores of 114 against the Bulldogs and 113 against the Wests Tigers. These two performances were against the worst two defensive sides in the NRL, andhe was goal kicking. However, an average of 65 points on the season does show that he is one of the top halves in the game. Hopefully we see DCE start next season as he has finished this one.

GameDay Squad Rugby League: Round 25 Review


Isaiah Papali’i – EDG, Wests Tigers (4 points)

With Hopgood unavailable this weekend, Papali’i seemed to be a great substitute on paper. Unfortunately, he rewarded those coaches that selected him with his worst performance of the season. Basically, the Sea Eagles blew the Wests Tigers off the park and gaining points through attacking stats was hard for any Wests Tigers player. Demerits was the biggest contributor to Papali’i’s season low score as he went on to miss 12 tackles and make 1 error. That’s 40 points lost in demerits! If it wasn’t for Mahoney’s performance against the Titans, I’m sure Papail’i would have been the player who lost the most points through demerits in a single game. With the season now over for the Wests Tigers, Papail’i owners will need to look ahead to 2024. Who knows if he can rise to the fantasy heights of 2022 again! I won’t be selling him as I would like to see what he can do in hopefully a better Wests Tigers side next season. After this poor performance, you might be able to find him at a discount as this might just be the best time to buy.

Scott Drinkwater – WFB, North Queensland Cowboys (11 points)

Unfortunately for the GDS coaches that played Drinkwater this weekend, their hopes of a high finish for round 27 may have gone up in flames just like the Cowboys finals dreams did. In this performance Drinkwater was just not able to get his hands on the ball as much as he has done lately. He also missed 6 tackles, and this cost him 18 points. Drinkwater has been arguably one of the top three WFBs at the back end of the season but against the Panthers he just didn’t get going. Since the Cowboys round 15 bye, Drinkwater had been averaging 71 points a game and this is quite outstanding. At the end of the day, the Cowboys were totally outclassed, and this really affected Drinkwater’s fantasy output. If you already have Drinkwater, I wouldn’t go selling him as I believe he will still be a great asset for 2024 and beyond. If you don’t have him, it might be an idea to check out the TM and see what he’s going for.

Reed Mahoney – HOK, Canterbury Bulldogs (-2 points)

If anyone did play Mahoney as a POD this week, he was a massive let down and saved his worst performance of the year for last. Like Papail’i, demerits were the main contributor to Mahoney’s poor score. He lost 42 points through 10 missed tackles, 2 errors and a penalty. This just isn’t good enough for GDS coaches. Mahoney has had a very poor first season at the Bulldogs and doesn’t look like the player he was at the Eels. He only has five scores of 50+ this season to go with two single digit scores as well as this weekend’s -2, for a season average of 33 points. Hopefully 2024 brings better fantasy fortunes for Mahoney as I still think he could be a top five hooker in GDS. He really does need to tidy up those missed tackles before any future consideration.


GameDay Squad Rugby League: Round 25 Review


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