RTS AND TOHU LEAD THE WAY IN TWL POTY RACE

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With 11 rounds of the 2021 regular season to go, previous winners Roger Tuivasa-Sheck and Tohu Harris are locked in an apparent two-horse race for the fourth annual This Warriors Life Player of the Year award.

Fashioned on now-defunct Rugby League Week‘s system of giving every player a rating out of 10 for every game, the TWL POTY gong will go to the Warriors player with the most accumulated points at the end of the season from our weekly player ratings. To give players that miss a few games with injury an opportunity to still vie for the honour, we’ll eliminate every player’s three lowest scores at the end of year.

Tuivasa-Sheck won the inaugural award in 2018 – the same year he claimed a historic Dally M Medal – finishing seven points clear of Issac Luke. RTS averaged a player rating of 7.61/10. The skipper went back-to-back in 2019, improving on his average (7.78) and finishing 11.5 points clear of his teammates in a disappointing season for the Warriors. It was Ken Maumalo –  then daylight for second spot.

Harris shaded Tuivasa-Sheck for the honour in 2020 by 6.5 points, achieving an average of 7.55 in a phenomenal season – one of the best ever by a Warriors forward.

The champion duo have put themselves right in the frame to pick up another TWL POTY nod. RTS leads on 94.5 points after 13 games, with Harris – who has played one less game – on 87.5 points. Leeson Ah Mau (87.5), who has featured in every game, is the only other Warrior within touching distance of the pair, though Bunty Afoa (78), Jazz Tevaga (78) and Ben Murdoch-Masila (77), who have all missed one game, could theoretically make a late charge.

Tuivasa-Sheck received the first-ever 9.5 score in the TWL player ratings for his superhero performance against Canberra in Round 3.

TWL RD 3 WARRIORS PLAYER RATINGS

TWL 2021 WARRIORS PLAYER OF THE YEAR LEADERBOARD

94.5 – Roger Tuivasa-Sheck
87.5 – Tohu Harris
87.5 – Leeson Ah Mau
78 – Bunty Afoa
78 – Jazz Tevaga
77 – Ben Murdoch-Masila
75 – Wayde Egan
70 – Kodi Nikorima

 

At this stage of the season – and in a squad beset by injuries – the totals so far are not necessarily reflective of who has been the team’s best players. The average player rating score out of 10 provides some interesting insights, with rookie sensation Reece Walsh easily leading that department after six games in the top flight, followed by the ultra-consistent Harris and Tuivasa-Sheck, and recently-returned front-row spearhead Addin Fonua-Blake. Walsh has received three scores of 8.5, along with a 9 for his blinder against Wests Tigers.

TWL RD 11: WARRIORS PLAYER RATINGS

TWL 2021 WARRIORS PLAYER RATINGS – HIGHEST AVERAGES

8.25 – Reece Walsh
7.29 – Tohu Harris
7.27 – Roger Tuivasa-Sheck
7.1 – Addin Fonua-Blake
6.83 – Sean O’Sullivan
6.73 – Leeson Ah Mau
6.5 – Bunty Afoa
6.5 – Jazz Tevaga
6.42 – Ben Murdoch-Masila

 

Perhaps the most intriguing/disturbing stats to come from the first 13 matches of 2021 player ratings-wise is the overabundance of underperforming players. A ‘6’ rating is generally accepted as a player having had an OK, acceptable game. Of the 28 Warriors used so far this season, 14 are averaging less than a 6 rating – including several key regulars. Spine pair Kodi Nikorima and Wayde Egan are among that bunch, despite earning multiple scores of 7.5 or above this year.

Meanwhile, the averages don’t paint a pretty picture for Edward Kosi’s hopes of seeing much more first grade, or the chances of forwards Kane Evans, Bayley Sironen, Eliesa Katoa, Jamayne Taunoa-Brown or Jack Murchie commanding a place in a full-strength 17. The numbers also suggest the controversial call to move on long-serving winger Maumalo was not completely unjustified. Paul Turner and Tom Ale can be considered unlucky to find themselves in the below list after getting only a couple of brief bench appearances.

TWL RD 5: WARRIORS PLAYER RATINGS

TWL 2021 WARRIORS PLAYER RATINGS – LOWEST AVERAGES

4.33 – Edward Kosi
5.12 – Kane Evans
5.25 – Paul Turner
5.34 – Peta Hiku
5.38 – Kodi Nikorima
5.5 – Bayley Sironen
5.64 – Eliesa Katoa
5.73 – Ken Maumalo
5.75 – Tom Ale
5.77 – Wayde Egan
5.78 – Jamayne Taunoa-Brown
5.86 – Jack Murchie

 

TUIVASA-SHECK TAKES OUT TWL PLAYER OF THE YEAR AWARD

RTS CLAIMS BACK-TO-BACK TWL PLAYER OF THE YEAR AWARDS

TOHU SHADES ROGER FOR TWL PLAYER OF THE YEAR AWARD

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