NUMBERS GAME: WARRIORS RD 7 & 8 STATS

All the key numbers from the Warriors’ last two wildly contrasting outings, plus how the boys stack up individually against their NRL rivals.

Despite their stoic defensive effort in a 20-10 victory over St George Illawarra in Round 7, the Warriors’ 50-10 drubbing at the hands of Melbourne on Anzac Day has seen them slip to eighth in the NRL for points conceded.

It was the first time since late-2015 the Warriors had leaked a half-century of points.

A modest return of 30 points in the past two weeks means the Warriors are now fifth for points scored.

But the good news is the Warriors are 6-2 – equalling the Warriors’ best start to a season after eight matches. The 2002 Warriors also started 6-2, before going on to claim the minor premiership and reach a maiden grand final. This year’s bunch have some work to do to keep pace with the ’02 vintage, however – the Stacey Jones-led side went on a club record eight-game winning streak from Round 7 to boast an 11-2 record by mid-June.

David Fusitu’a stayed atop the NRL’s tryscoring charts with a brilliant double against the Storm – his fourth two-try effort this season – to take his tally to 10. On-fire opposite Josh Addo-Carr also scored twice to move to outright second with eight tries. No other player has managed more than six tries in 2018.

While it may be unrealistic to expect ‘Fus’ to continue his prolific scoring rate for the entire season, if he does he will smash the Warriors’ season tryscoring record (23, by Francis Meli in 2003) and become the just the third player to reach the magical 30-try mark in premiership history. Fusitu’a now has 42 career tries from 65 games – a strike-rate of 0.65 tries per game, behind only the great Manu Vatuvei in Warriors history.

Fusitu’a is equal-10th in the NRL for line-breaks with six, the most by a Warriors player. He also leads the Warriors’ error count with a modest nine.

Roger Tuivasa-Sheck and Ken Maumalo are ranked ninth and 10th in the NRL respectively for running metres. RTS ran for game-high totals of 176 and 188 metres against the Dragons and Storm, while Maumalo was around the 120-metre mark in both games.

Issac Luke ran for 106 metres in his stunning display against the Dragons, his 50th game for the Warriors; the in-form hooker was sorely missed after leaving the field early on Anzac Day.

A huge second-half performance saw Anthony Gelling finish with 170 metres from a game-high 17 carries in Melbourne. Albert Vete, who came off the bench, was the only Warriors forward to top triple figures against the Storm.

Tuivasa-Sheck is in equal-15th for try assists in the NRL with six and equal-23rd for tackle-breaks with 25 – fourth and eighth amongst fullbacks respectively – and the most by a Warriors player in both categories.

Simon Mannering (41) topped the tackle count against the Dragons ahead of Jazz Tevaga (38), Luke (35) and Adam Blair (28). Tevaga (34) led the way against the Storm after slotting in at dummy-half, with Bunty Afoa (33), Mannering (32), Isaiah Papali’i and Blair (both 28) not far behind.

Despite his early exit last week, Luke is the Warriors’ top tackler for the season with 208 (equal-32nd in the NRL), just ahead of Afoa with 206, Blair with 202 and Tevaga with 199. Tevaga, who missed the first two rounds, is well in front at the club for average tackles per game with 33.2 (17th in the NRL), while Mannering is averaging 31 tackles a game after returning in Round 5.

Peta Hiku has missed a disturbing 32 tackles across the opening eight rounds – equal-fourth in the NRL – while Mason Lino has the second-worst per-game average in the NRL behind James Maloney with 4.7 missed tackles (more than twice as many as Shaun Johnson). Hiku and Lino are the only Warriors players to average more than 2.5 missed tackles a game.

Afoa deserves a huge wrap here: he is missing just 0.8 tackles per game, despite a heavy defensive workload.

Luke is by far the Warriors’ most penalised play, pinged 10 times in seven-and-a-bit games. Only Peter Wallace and Andrew Fifita have been penalised more times this year. Blair and Tevaga are next in the Warriors ranks with six penalties conceded each.

Hiku leads the Warriors for offloads with 16 – equal-fifth in the NRL. Luke and Tuivasa-Sheck have 15 to their names (equal-ninth in the NRL), while Blair has offloaded 10 times (equal-24th).

Maumalo is set to play his 50th NRL game this weekend against Wests Tigers.

 

THE PUNT

The following selections paid out in the past two rounds (via NZ TAB)

Warriors 20 d Dragons 10

-Warriors Win @ $2.00
-Warriors 1-10 @ $3.50
-Under 38.5 @ $1.87
-Mason Lino First Tryscorer @ $19

Storm 50 d Warriors 10

-Storm win @ $1.47
-Storm -6.5 @ $1.90
-Storm 13+ @ $2.75
-Over 38.5 @ $1.87

-David Fusitu’a To Score 2+ Tries @ $3.50

 

 

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