RED AND BLACK REPORT 2019: EDITION 22 & 23
Each week the Red and Black Report will keep you up to date with how our Canterbury Rugby League products are performing in Australia’s elite and lower-grade competitions.
Aranui product Jamayne Isaako’s late-season resurgence has continued, scoring two brilliant four-pointers, running for over 200 metres and kicking four goals in Brisbane Broncos’ Round 22 win over Penrith.
— NRL (@NRL) August 16, 2019
— NRL (@NRL) August 16, 2019
He then made a line-break among 115 running metres and kicked four-from-four in last Friday’s loss to South Sydney.
Last season’s Dally M Rookie of the Year, Isaako looked to have fallen victim to the dreaded second-year syndrome. But after failing to record a try or line-break in the first half of the season, the winger has posted four tries and made seven line-breaks in his last eight games. Isaako has also racked up 150-plus metres in four of his last six games, despite not reaching that mark previously in 2019.
Jazz Tevaga and Kodi Nikorima had a forgettable outing as the Warriors were hammered 42-6 by Sydney Roosters in Round 22. The Burnham juniors were set to share the dummy-half duties, but Gerard Beale’s season-ending injury forced a reshuffle.
Tevaga played the full game at hooker – aside from 10 minutes he spent in the sin-bin – while Nikorima struggled to impose himself after coming on at five-eighth.
— NRL (@NRL) August 18, 2019
Issac Luke’s return from suspension last week allowed Tevaga to revert to his preferred lock position, racking up 126 metres and a game-high 49 tackles in the Warriors 42-16 defeat to Cronulla.
Nikorima had 52 minutes of game-time off the bench – predominantly at hooker – but again had limited impact.
CANTERBURY CUP NSW
Hornby old boy Fa’amanu Brown ran for over 100 metres in Canterbury Bulldogs’ 36-24 win over South Sydney in Round 22, while he scored a try in a strong all-round game in the following week’s 28-20 loss to Wentworthville. The Bulldogs sit third on the Canterbury Cup ladder.
After missing the Round 22 win over Blacktown, Halswell junior Matt McIlwrick played 61 minutes of Wentworthville’s win over Canterbury, racking up seven runs and 29 tackles.
INSTRUST SUPER CUP
Ex-Northern Bulldogs utility Sheldon Pitama has nailed down Redcliffe Dolphins’ No.9 jersey for the time being, starting at hooker in back-to-back thrashings of CQ Capras (58-4) and PNG Hunters (46-0). The Dolphins’ late-season surge has seen the club seal a spot in the ISC finals.
Jordan Riki started in the unfamiliar wing position in Norths Devils’ 32-10 win over Mackay Cutters in Round 21. But he starred after reverting to his regular back-row role, scoring a second-half try and finishing with 84 metres and 25 tackles.
The Devils used the same line-up tactic in last weekend’s 26-20 win over CQ Capras – with similarly impressive results. Riki scored another try in the second half (this time while he was stationed on the flank) and racked up 122 metres and 21 tackles.
The Brisbane Broncos-contracted Riki has been named to start in the second-row for the Devils this Sunday against Wynnum-Manly.
JERSEY FLEGG CUP (NSW U20s)
Joseph Taipari was a late inclusion at five-eighth for Parramatta’s 28-10 win over Canterbury in Round 23.
Sua Ailoilo continues to hold his starting front-row spot in the Bulldogs’ Flegg side, featuring in the Round 22 win over the Rabbitohs and last weekend’s loss to the Eels.
HASTINGS DEERING COLTS (QLD U20s)
Zinzan Martin was at centre and Griffin Neame started at prop in for Townsville Blackhawks’ 28-10 win over Sunshine Coast Falcons two rounds ago.
Martin was joined in the centres by Daejarn Asi on the weekend and both Canterbury products scored a try in the Blackhawks’ 32-4 rout of Wynnum-Manly Seagulls.
Jalen Tangiiti-Turner scored a try in Wynnum-Manly’s 72-6 demolition of Western Mustangs in Round 21, but the winger found opportunities harder to come by against Townsville.