Record breaking history was made in the eighth round of the Betfred Super League as March ended up on a memorable note.
Some teams starting to pull away whereas others have a real slog on their hands, check out who stood out as Super League enters spring.
Coach – Steve Price
An obvious selection, let’s face it, as the passionate Steve Price is named as coach.
Price’s Warrington completely blitzed Hull FC at the KCOM stadium, becoming the first visiting team to score 11 tries and over 60 points as the Wolves showed their previous Wembley opponents how to leave the past well and truly behind them.
Price seems to be taking Warrington to the ‘next level’ as it really is looking like it could be their year!
Full-back – Jack Walker
Starting off is one of Leeds’ hottest prospect in Jack Walker.
The 19-year-old was one of the Rhinos’ work horses in a rare league win over the Castleford Tigers.
The youngster managed 163 metres from 21 carries and four tackle busts but remained solid in defence all evening under the high ball.
A demonstration of how emotionally matured he has become and should he keep fit, could remain a key link in the Rhinos’ possible revival.
Wingers – Josh Charnley & Joe Burgess
Two hat-trick heroes are selected on the wing in former international Josh Charnley and Joe Burgess.
Both did what was expected in them as they helped their sides put Hull FC and Catalans to the sword respectively.
Charnley managed 163 metres from 19 carries plus three clean break, whereas Burgess busted six tackles and tallied 166 metres from 14 carries.
Superb stuff from both players as they will look to regain their international positions and run out for Great Britain for the very first time!
Centres – Reece Lyne & Oliver Gildart
Another two work horses at centre in Wakefield’s Reece Lyne and Wigan’s Oliver Gildart.
Lyne was superb yet again for Trinity, scoring a try and tallying up to 130 metres from 15 carries, plus completed 20 tackles, a high amount for a three-quarter.
It was enough to help ensure Wakefield to a hard-fought yet crucial win over play-off rivals Salford, with Lyne raising more than a few eyebrows towards his critics.
Speaking of raised eyebrows and surprises, Gildart finally rediscovered his previous form that has earned him international selection as he and Wigan made it back-to-back wins.
And it was rather comfortable by all accounts as Catalans have produced some interesting rugby this season but Wigan threw the form back out the window.
The centre amassed the highest amount of metres with 322 from 19 carries, scored a try, assisted in two and even managed seven tackle busts for good measure as the previous champions may have truly kick-started the defence of their Super League crown.
Stand-off – Blake Austin
A man of steel favourite and arguably Super League’s next biggest signing as Blake Austin led the way in Warrington’s demolition of Hull FC on Friday.
The 28-year-old scored four tries, sold more dummies than Mothercare, but was heavily involved in all aspects of their attack.
Also managed 12 tackle busts, five attacking kicks and 180 metres from 19 carries, Austin is quickly becoming one of the competition’s greatest ever signings and could easily return to international sooner rather than expected.
Scrum-half – Jackson Hastings
Wait? Didn’t this guy lose again? Salford’s Jackson Hastings retain his position at scrum-half as he was another stand-out performer in the match at Wakefield.
Hastings notched up another try but his 150 metres from 21 carries are an unusual high amount for a modern Super League scrum-half.
But the Australian has quickly won over supporters over here with his enthusiasm and skill and remains a contender himself for international selection as well as the Dream Team come the end of the season.
Props – Liam Watts & Luke Thompson
Now a duo who successfully demonstrated why they deserve to be named in Wayne Bennett’s elite international squad in Liam Watts and Luke Thompson.
Watts may have lost but performed heroically and kept Castleford competitive throughout in their narrow defeat at Leeds.
He scored a try, made over 200 metres from 24 carries and also completed 41 tackles.
Though did have a slight brain fart by conceding a penalty for obstruction during Jake Trueman’s drop-goal. Nevertheless, he worked hard and did enough to avoid negative headlines, unlike team mate Paul McShane.
As for Thompson, he stood out in the ‘weakened’ St Helens side that battled past Hull KR on Friday.
He also was a try scorer in the class but also, five tackle busts, two clean breaks and 194 metres from 20 carries helped keep the Saints on top and was enough to help them remain unbeaten in their first eight games.
Hooker – Brad Dwyer
Unsurprisingly, at hooker is ‘gate crasher’ Brad Dwyer. Did he keep that promise? Whether or not, he is remembered mainly for that ‘monster’ drop-goal to edge Leeds to their first home win of 2019.
However, that was not his only contribution, providing a try assist and completing 47 tackles was superb, as was his 116 metres from 15 carries that kept Castleford busy in defence.
A ‘risky’ signing described by some but this was arguably his finest hour for the Rhinos thus far, rewarding the clubs’ trust that he means business for the previous champions.
Second-row – Cameron Smith & Willie Isa
An ‘unlikely’ combination for the second-row as Leeds youngster Cameron Smith is joined by Wigan’s Willie Isa.
The Rhinos have faced scrutiny for their signings but this gives the youngsters a chance to shine and Smith was successful.
He completed a staggering 49 tackles, managed four busts and tallied 127 metres from carries in a rare league win over Castleford.
As for Isa, he produced similar superlatives, with 38 tackles, two busts and 113 metres from 14 carries in Wigan’s annihilation of Catalans.
Loose-forward – Tinirau Arona
Finally at loose-forward is Wakefield’s Tinirau Arona.
You expect any potent forward pack to have been involved in a hard-fought win and Arona helped in that, providing Trinity with extra fire power going forward.
He made 126 metres from 16 carries and also put in 25 tackles that was enough to restrict Salford from coming back into the game and helping to see Wakefield return to winning ways in their quest for Play-off action.
During Round One of the Betfred Super League, a shocking incident occurred at the...
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