Top 5 – Hooker

Leeds Rhinos 22-14 Leigh Centurions

We’re looking at a season that the dominance in the ruck is being pinpointed, and the men who control the play off the back are the next on our list.

 

5. Michael McIlorum

Micky Mac travelled to France to kick on a team that had hit stagnant years, but it didn’t all go to plan.

Catalans struggled to get going and were reliant on the forwards to give them a chance, and although chances came, they soon went and you could feel the frustration.

Since, the Dragons have sped on, led by the control around the ruck by McIlorum.

The no. 9 has 7 assists to his name from the ruck and with the blistering defence he’s known all too well for, it won’t be a surprise to see him lead his side to the top 8 and possibly even a Challenge Cup final.

 

4. Danny Houghton

Hull FC 39-26 Wigan Warriors

Houghton always makes his presence felt on the field with smart play and hard hitting defence.

We will never forget the last ditch tackle at Wembley to stop Ben Currie scoring in the last minute of the game, to win the Challenge Cup.

He has made a career of being one of the most consistent defensive players in the league and has turned into a smart number 9 in the process.

With Houghton in control, Hull will push the top 4 all the way to the end of the season.

 

3. Matt Parcell

Leeds Rhinos 46-10 Catalans Dragons

Parcell became an instant hit with the Leeds fans upon his arrival, and has continued to prove their trust did not go undeserved.

Parcell has been a solid defensive asset with 470+ tackles but it’s in attack that the hooker has the most influence. He has over a 1000 metres at over 8.5 metres per carry from behind the ruck and that goes with three solo efforts to get over the try line.

Leeds will be hoping Parcell will be with them for many years to come as they try to push back up to compete with the top of the table.

 

2. Daryl Clark

Rugby League suspensions

Known more for his ability to break through tired or broken defences, Clark is also a top notch defender.

Clark leads the way for number of tackles for the entire league as well as continuing his quick thinking out the back of broken rucks to push his team forward.

An average carry of over 9 metres proves that the hooker knows when to press the defensive line.

He has struggled at times whilst at Warrington but this season Clark seems determined to take his side all the way to Old Trafford.

 

Considerable mention – Paul McShane

McShane has had a difficult season, with all his fellow creative players either spending time on the sideline or not performing, meaning he has played three different positions during the season but has performed to hold some form of shape in the Castleford side.

As well as performing going forward, with a good kicking game, the no. 9 has done plenty of work in defence, putting together over 600 tackles.

Very close to making this list but it would be unfair to go without mentioning the Tigers forward.

 

1. James Roby

Yet another Saints player in top spot, but this may be the last one St. Helens fans have to cheers about.

Roby has been the consistent figure in years gone by for a side that have struggled to be a shadow of the side we all feared.

Now, Roby is the consistent figure in a side that we all once again fear, as Saints push further and further ahead in the league standings.

All you have to do is take a look at his figures and you realise this choice just can’t be argued;

-555 tackles
– 6 try assists
– 3 tries
– 1200 metres
– 8.5 metres per carry

England have clearly agreed as they have chosen him as the only out and out hooker in the 19 man squad to face New Zealand.

Not much else can be said of a man that will leave a bigger legacy than the man he had to replace.