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  1. #1141
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    George Etuale-Noa. (Revised) In early 2019 He signed a two year deal with the Titans and in January 2019 was part of the Titans U18 side that took on a Newcastle Knights U18 squad in Coffs Harbour.

    George Etuala-Noa started in the second row for the Burleigh Bears MM Cup side in 2018, playing in all six MM Cup matches for the Bears.

    George Etuala-Noa’s first career MM Cup try came in Round Four against the Central Queensland Capra’s in a tough away match for the Bears. Playing left second row George Etuala-Noa ran into a gap in the Townsville line and was rewarded by receiving a good ball from front rower and fellow Titan Tristian Powell.

    Post the MM Cup competition George Etuala-Noa was part of the Burleigh U18 Division One side making his debut off the bench in Round Five against Southport before moving into the starting line-up in the second row in Round Six against Runaway Bay. Whilst he played primarily in the second row George Etuala-Noa did spend some time in the front row including starting there in Round Thirteen against Bilambil.

    George Etuala-Noa scored his first try of the season in Round Ten against Southport and also scored in Round Eleven against Runaway Bay. In Round Twelve against Helensvale George Etuala-Noa had an outstanding match scoring a double.

    In total in the GCRL U18 Division One regular season competition, George Etuala-Noa played in seven matches scoring four tries, with those tries noted above.

    In Week Two of the U18 Division One Finals series George Etuala-Noa started in the front row for Burleigh in their victory 34 – 8 against Southport to progress directly to the Grand Final contributing a try to the dominating victory.

    George Etuala-Noa started in the front row in Burleigh 28 -12 U18 Division One Grand Final win over Southport 28 -12 and had strong stints in each half.

    To say that George Etuale-Noa had a good 2018 season would be an absolute understatement. For the Coomera Cutters in the U17 Division Two competition he was simply outstanding leading his side all of the way to the Grand Final.

    Over the course of the 2018 U17 Division Two season George Etuale-Noa played in fourteen matches for Coomera including the finals series scoring a competition leading twenty seven tries at an impressive strike rate of 193%.

    In the regular season George Etuale-Noa scored six tries in a late season match against Jimboomba (he scored four against them in the finals) and hat tricks against Jimboomba who must have been sick of the sight of him by seasons end and Currumbin, with those hat tricks coming in consecutive rounds. George Etuale-Noa also scored regular season doubles against Beaudesert and of course Jimboomba.

    In four matches against Jimboomba this season including one finals match George Etuale-Noa scored fifteen tries for a strike rate against the Thunder of 375%.

    In Week Two of the U17 Division Two finals series George Etuale-Noa started at lock for Coomera scoring a try as the Cutters went down 28 – 16 to Currumbin.

    In Week Three of the U17 Division Two finals series the Cutters bounced back from their previous week’s finals loss to put Jimboomba to the sword in the Preliminary winning 62 – 4 with George Etuale-Noa started in the front row and scoring four tries.

    In the Grand Final George Etuale-Noa started in the front row and scored a hat trick but could not prevent Coomera going down 24 – 18 to Currumbin.

    George Etuale-Noa also had an outstanding 2017 campaign with the Coomera Cutters playing in two different age groups and was also selected in the 2018 Burleigh Bears MM Cup training squad.

    George Etuale-Noa started off the 2017 season in the U17 Division Two competition playing in seven matches scoring against Burleigh Heads and Nerang. Around mid-season, George Etuale-Noa started playing more for the Cutters in the U16 Division Two competition where he was near unstoppable averaging a try a match through eight games.

    George Etuale-Noa started off his time in the U16 Division Two competition with a double against Nerang and finished it with a hat trick against Nerang as well. In between George Etuale-Noa scored a double against Helensvale and he also scored against Ormeau to account for his eight tries in the U16 Division Two competition.

    George Etuale-Noa is a hard running player who never seems to just put his head down and runs straight, he always uses a slight step prior to contacting the defensive line, coupled with the fact that he drops his shoulder into defenders, means that he is a bit of a handful to tackle and he is not often knocked back onto his heals. George Etuale-Noa is also good at maintaining his momentum and body control after impacting the defensive line.

    George Etuale-Noa seems to have a high work rate and I would suggest that he would normally be at or near the top of his team’s statistics in terms of the number of hit ups he makes and on occasion runs a very good inside shoulder route to supplement his other attacking attributes. He does not off-load the ball much however and probably never be one based on how he asked to play the game.

    Defensively George Etuale-Noa aims hits very hard and usually hits around the top of the ball region and is certainly someone opposing forwards look for when running the ball up and is adept at making sure the opposition do not get quick play the balls by using wrestling techniques well.

    Last year his speed and mobility seemed to have increased and as a consequence he was better able to mirror the opposition attackers more effectively. George Etuale-Noa will make opponents feel every tackle that he makes.

    George Etuale-Noa will be part of the Burleigh Bears Hastings Deering’s Colts squad in 2020 and he will also be Colts eligible in 2021.

    From a position perspective, George Etuale-Noa seems to have the skill attributes and mentality to stay in the front row or at lock as he moves through the senior rugby league competitions.

    From a player comparison perspective, I would consider a player along the lines of current Titans front rower and captain Ryan James as a big strong tough hard working front rower who looks to get a quick play the ball every time he takes a hit up and also ones that looks to dominate in defence in relation to each and every tackles he makes.

    The Titans really have a good player on their hands with George Etuale-Noa

  2. #1142
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    Jack Smith. The young utility late in 2018 signed a scholarship with the Titans from the Forbes Spacemen after playing for the New South Wales Country U16 side against a Titans U16 squad at Cudgen in late 2018 in wet and miserable conditions.

    Jack Smith started from the bench for the New South Wales Country side in the match with New South Wales Country running out 30 – 10 winners. Jack Smith was also part of the New South Wales Country U16 side that defeated PNG U16’s a couple of days earlier in Ballina in Northern New South Wales as a precursor to the match against the Titans.

    Jack Smith in June 2019 was part of the Titans U18 side that played North Queensland in a curtain raiser to the Titans/Warriors NRL match at Cbus stadium starting that particular match at fullback.

    Jack Smith started Round One of the 2019 GCRL U18 Division One at fullback for his new club being the Currumbin Eagles in their match against Burleigh where he was opposed by fellow Titan Will Evans.

    In total Jack Smith played in seven regular season matches for Currumbin in the 2019 GCRL U18 Division One competition, playing the majority at fullback although he did play a number of matches at centre, his first being in Round Nine against Helensvale.

    Jack Smith also played centre in Round Ten, scoring a hat trick against Bilambil (he converted one of his tries in that match as well) and also from the centre position scored sixteen points from a try and six goals in Round Twelve against Runaway Bay.

    Jack Smith also played a number of matches for PBC in their Open A side including starting at fullback in their Langer Cup derby against Keebra Park in June, scoring in the second half of PBC’s victory. Jack Smith moved into dummy half around ten metres out from the line and threw a big dummy to his left and then took off for the line scoring adjacent to the left upright.

    Initially Jack Smith was held up by three defenders but instead of submitting to the tackle spun counter clock wise separating himself from the defenders and falling to his knees. Jack Smith had the presence of mind to note that his arm holding the ball had not touched the ground and thus reached out to put the ball down beside the left upright.

    Jack Smith also started at fullback for PBC in their Queensland GIO Cup quarter final win over St Mary’s High School Toowoomba 50 – 6 and was once again at fullback, pulling off two try saving tackles in the GIO Cup semi-final loss to Marsden State High School in heart breaking fashion.

    In November 2019 Jack Smith was named the PBC Open Rugby League Most Improved Player at the PBC Sport Awards Night.

    Playing in the Group 11 competition for the Parkes Spacemen in 2018 Jack Smith played in both the U16 and U18 competitions over the course of the 2018 season. In the U16 competition Jack Smith spent time at fullback including starting the Grand Final at fullback. Jack Smith also played eight U18 matches scoring a hat trick in his first career U18 match against Dubbo Macquarie.

    Jack Smith was also part of the 2018 victorious Western Rams U18 Laurie Daley Cup side and started at lock as they defeated Illawarra South Coast Dragons in the final. Jack Smith started all seven of the matches that he was involved in and scored three tries, including a double against the Wests Tigers and in Round Two he scored against the Riverina Bulls.

    In 2017 Jack Smith was selected at fullback for the New South Wales Combined Catholic Colleges side from Red Bend Catholic College starting all of the matches that he played in during the ASSRL U15 Championships.

    Jack Smith is a hard ball runner who is adept at using late and quick footwork just prior to contact line which he hits with power and force in absolutely every hit up that he makes dropping his shoulder into the first defender that is looking to make the initial contact.

    His ability to get low to engage the defenders with his shoulder rather than allowing them to get in and under his ribs and also a substantial leg drive means that he drives defenders backwards even after they had engaged him with significant force rather than allowing them to impact on his momentum.

    Whilst his ball running skills are the first thing that you will likely notice when seeing Jack Smith his defence is equally effective even though it may not be as noticeable at first glance. Defensively Jack Smith has a tough edge to his play and his initial contact is more than sufficient to redirect the momentum of the ball carrier when defending in the forwards. Jack Smith sets a very good base defensively as well and uses it to maintain his balance when setting up for a tackle.

    Defensively Jack Smith hits very hard and is adept at making sure the opposition do not get quick play the balls. He also has a touch of aggression in his play and definitely finishes off each tackle that he is involved in.

    Jack Smith is equally adept at defending in the centre of the ruck as he is defending on the fringes and his initial contact is more than sufficient to make an impact on the ball carrier’s momentum.

    Whilst his stamina is very impressive, so is his initial contact, he uses his strength and leverage to hit the ball carrier hard forcing momentum changes to the ball carrier. Jack Smith is also adept at wrapping up the ball and preventing offloads as Jack Smith uses his functional strength to engage ball carriers. Defensively in a covering role Jack Smith has very good catch up speed and a solid low tackling technique from a side aspect.

    Jack Smith’s good situation awareness also enables him to be well positioned when he is defending against smaller quicker players and he endeavours to minimise the time available for the opposing attacker to generate speed and to utilise their footwork.

    Jack Smith is also able to change direction quickly to adjust to the directional changes of the attacker especially when he is marking up against multiple attackers running in his direction where Jack Smith will hold his ground and let the play to develop in front of him before committing to a specific defensive course of action.

    In 2020 Jack Smith will be part of the Tweed Heads MM Cup squads as well as continue to attend PBC where he should be part of their Open A side once again in the Langer Cup and GIO Cup School Boy competitions. Of course Jack Smith will also play in the U18 Division One competition for the second season in a row with the Currumbin Eagles.

    Jack Smith played a number of positions this season including fullback, five eight and lock but ultimately I believe that he will end up being an old style skilful second rower.

    For me Jack Smith has a playing style akin to that of another youngster hailing from the same region being Brisbane Bronco’s 2018 NRL debutant Kotoni Staggs. Both players just exhibit a feel and desire for the game of rugby league that just cannot be taught and can also play multiple positions equally effectively.

    Jake Smith is just a natural rugby league player it really is just that simple.

  3. #1143
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    Ziah Piggott. The young Titans linked fullback was one of the players that represented one of the Titans U15 squads that played each other and a Western Mustangs selection at Mudgeeraba in February 2019.

    Ziah Piggot played the 2019 season with Kyogle in the Group One competition, playing in both his regular U15 age group and also playing a number of matches “up” in the U16.5 competition.

    In the 2019 Group One U15 competition Ziah Piggott played nine regular season matches for Kyogle scoring fourteen tries (156% strike rate) including a big match in Round Four when he scored four tries against Lismore Marist Brothers in a 36 – 14 win for the Turkeys. In fact Ziah Piggott finished five tries clear on the Group One U15 top try scorers list such was the outstanding season that Ziah Piggott had.

    Ziah Piggott also had a big Round Six match scoring four tries for Kyogle as they defeated Clarence Coast 38 - 12.

    Ziah Piggott’s other 2019 Group One regular season U15 tries included a double against Casino RSM and he also scored against came against Ballina, Lismore Marist Brothers, Casino RSM and Clarence Coast.

    Ziah Piggott added a further U15 try in Week One of the Group One finals series but unfortunately Kyogle fell 26 – 10 to Ballina.

    Ziah Piggott’s 2019 season came to an end when Kyogle went down 18 – 12 to Clarence Coast in the 2019 Group One U15 Preliminary Final.

    Ziah Piggott in 2019 also represented the Group One U15 representative side at the New South Wales Country Age Championships starting all three of their matches in the centres scoring three tries including a double in his second match of Day One against Group 19. Ziah Piggott also scored on Day Two against Central Coast.

    In the 2018 Group One U16.5 competition Ziah Piggott played in nine matches, his debut being against Clarence Coast in Round Two scoring on debut. In addition to his Round Two try, Ziah Piggott also scored against Lismore Marist Brothers Blue in Round Four and he also scored a double against Lismore Marist Blue in Round Twelve.

    In relation to all of his 2019 Group One U16.5 matches, Ziah Piggott played in the fixture after playing in the U15 match earlier in the day.

    Ziah Piggott was named in the centres for the 2019 Group One U15 Taipans for the New South Wales Country Age Championships that were held in Port Macquarie in late September. Ziah Piggott scored a double in Group One’s Northern Plate 40 – 10 win over Group 19 and scored again in Group One’s Northern Plate semi-final loss 38 – 12 to Central Coast.

    In 2018, Ziah Piggott played fifteen matches including starting the Grand Final at fullback in the Group One U14 competition, scoring twenty tries (133% strike rate), including scoring a hat trick in Round Two against Clarence Coast.

    Mid-season in 2018, Ziah Piggott had an incredible string of five straight games where he scored a double in each match with those matches coming in order against Grafton, Ballina, Casino RSM, Lismore Marist Brothers and Clarence Coast.

    2018 also saw Ziah Piggott play one match in the Group One U15 competition scoring a double on debut against the South Grafton Rebels in July after playing in the U14 fixture earlier in the day.

    Ziah Piggott represented the Group One U14 representative side in 2018, starting at fullback in all five of their matches in the New South Wales Country U14 Age Championships including scoring in their Plate Final victory against Group Nine 22 – 18, with Ziah Piggott’s try the one that gave the lead to Group One for good late in the second half.

    For a taller fullback Ziah Piggott is very quick off the mark and when the ball is being brought out of his teams half he is always around the forwards looking for off loads but as evidenced by one of his tries he also can play the way a lot of the current fullbacks play when they receive the football “out the back” from the half or five eight.

    Ziah Piggott presents as a silky smooth player, who looks like he glides across the field picking and choosing his time to get involved and wants to have the ball in his hands when the game is on the line.

    In terms of his defence, one thing that stood out to me when have seen him play is when the opposition makes a break Ziah Piggott moves forward looking to cut down the time of the attacking player, which is quite impressive for such a young player. Due to his length, Ziah Piggott is good also at defending the high ball.

    Ziah Piggott will play the 2020 season with Kyogle in the Group One U16.5 competition and may well also feature in a number of matches for Kyogle in their U18 NRRRL squad. Ziah Piggott has already left school and is working full time thus he has a maturity level probably higher than the majority of players his age.

    2020 should see Ziah Piggott as part of the Northern Rivers Titans U16 Andrew Johns Cup squad who will be looking to repeat their 2019 success.

    Ziah Piggott has been a fullback his entire junior rugby league career to date and whilst that is likely to continue to as least the medium term it would not surprise if Ziah Piggott moves to the wing or even to the centres as he nears the senior rugby league ranks.

    On the wing Ziah Piggott’s length, balance and body control would be a great asset in terms of the ability of modern day wingers to score the incredible try or two and it is a similar situation in the centres.

    From a player comparison perspective for Ziah Piggott, I would say a reasonable comparison to Josh Duggan of the Cronulla Sharks would be fair as a player who is a very good runner of the football and who has the confidence to back himself in both attack and defence regardless of the situation of the game. Like Duggan, Ziah Piggott can more than comfortably handle playing both at fullback and in the centres.

    As harsh as it sounds though, Ziah Piggott is far more durable that Josh Duggan though and will more than likely continue to be as his career progresses.

  4. #1144
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    Jake Lenard. (Updated) The young second rower from the Clarence Coast Magpies club in Northern New South Wales was part of the Titans U15’s that played against another Titans and Western Mustangs sides at Mudgeeraba in February 2019.

    Jake Lenard missed a number of rounds of the Group One U15 competition due to injury but bounced back in a big way in Round Twelve scoring a hat trick against Casino RSM.

    In Week One of the Group One U15 Finals series, Jake Lenard had a big hand in Clarence Coast’s 42 – 10 win over Lismore Marist Brothers contributing a double to the win and also started in the Grand Final as Clarence Coast defeated Ballina 14 - 10.

    Jake Lenard was named on the interchange bench for the Group One U15 Taipans representative side for the New South Wales Country Age Championships that were held in Port Macquarie in late September and post those Championships was named the Group One U15 Representative Player of the Year.

    In 2019 Jake Lenard also represented the Northern region NSW CCC U15 rugby league side at their trials held in May in Sydney after the Maclean High School student stood out for the Northern Rivers side in the Northern Trials.

    In 2018, Jake Lenard finished as the Group One U14 competitions second leading try scorer with twenty one tries from just fifteen matches (140%), scoring in all but two of those matches, with those matches being against Ballina and Kyogle.

    Jake Lenard scored four tries in a mid-June match against Casino RSM and scored a hat trick against Grafton in July 2018. Jake Lenard also scored four doubles which were against Casino RSM in two separate matches, Kyogle and Grafton.

    Jake Lenard also played four matches in the Group One U15 competition in 2018, making his debut against Casino RSM in early April and celebrated by scoring a double. He had also scored a double earlier in the day in the U14 match.

    Jake Lenard went on to play a total of six U15 Group One matches in 2018 and in addition to his debut double also scored against Casino RSM once again later in the season and against Kyogle.

    Jake Lenard also played in five matches for the Group One U14 representative side in 2018, playing in five matches in their New South Wales Country U14 Championship campaign including starting from the bench in their Plate Final 22 – 18 victory over Group 9.

    In 2017 Jake Lenard a few other positions from the Clarence Coast Magpies junior rugby league club in the Group One Junior Rugby League competition in Northern New South Wales continued his outstanding try scoring feats throughout the 2017 Group One JRL U13 competition, where the former U12 New South Wales representative scored a staggering 35 tries in just eleven games. Understandably Jake Lenard leads the try scoring list for his age group.

    Jake Lenard scored six tries in a May match against Grafton and five against Ballina in August. In addition Jake Lenard scored four tires twice, coming against Kyogle and Casino RSM and also hat tricks against Casino RSM, Marist Brothers, Ballina and Grafton. Jake Lenard in 2017 played two matches in the U14 Group One JRL competition with those matches being against Ballina and South Grafton.

    Scoring tries is not a foreign experience for Jake Lenard as in 2016 at the U12 level he scored 20 tries from ten matches. To round off his points scoring this season, Jake Lenard also converted one of his tries in the Round Two clash against Casino RSM.

    Jake Lenard is a very calm player on the field even though he plays the game at a very high speed and is most effective on the edge of the ruck. His style of play is that of a wide running player with above average to plus speed. I would actually argue that in fact a better definition of his speed would be well above average, and I am talking the speed of an outside back not a backrower.

    Jake Lenard is exceptionally quick off the mark, but what makes him even more impressive from a speed perspective is that when he gets into space, he has an extra gear again, making it almost impossible for the cover defence to catch him once he is open space.

    Jake Lenard is almost untouchable when he runs on the fringes of the ruck and uses his foot work to beat defenders with a variety of moves, including a step off both feet and a very good in and away. Couple those two aspects with a very good fend and you have a young player who causes nightmares for a defensive line.

    Jake Lenard is not a player but he runs with pace, strength and power every time he touches the ball. I have not seen a great deal of him off loading the football, but the ball skills that he possess would suggest this particular will develop into a plus skill over time.

    Jake Lenard is aggressive in defence whether he is defending in the centre of the ruck or on the fringes, and due to his natural strength is more than capable of defending one on one and can and will stop even the biggest opposing forwards in their tracks and targets the area around where the attackers carry the football.

    Jake Lenard’s speed and lateral movement means that he will not be beaten by light stepping halves trying to take advantage of tiring forwards or the opposition running out of dummy half. Due to his speed and athleticism Jake Lenard covers across the field well, thus putting him in a good position to make the tackle when the ball is turned back inside from the halves.

    Jake Lenard will play for the Clarence Coast Magpies in the Group One Junior Rugby League U15 competition in 2019 and will also more than likely represent Group One at the U15 level in the New South Wales Country Championships.

    From a position perspective I concede that I have no idea where Jake Lenard will actually end up, he can literally play anywhere from centre to second row and a few other positions, but ultimately I would consider that Jake Lenard will end up a devastating second rower in rugby league.

    From a player comparison perspective for Jake Lenard, a young Brisbane Bronco’s version of Alex Glen, with more speed, springs to mind as an appropriate comparison, when you see the combination of the skill set he possesses and his athletic ability and of course intensity.

  5. #1145
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    Ezra Ubaldino. (Revised) He is a local young Titans contracted centre or second rower.

    Ezra Ubaldino’s most recent match for the Titans was when he started in the second row for the Titans U16 squad in their early October 2019 match against PNG at Pizzey Park.

    In an early 2019 match against the Newcastle Knights in Coffs Harbour for the Titans U16 side Ezra Ubaldino started at left centre and was his usual hard running hard tackling aggressive self. Ezra Ubaldino did not necessarily have too many opportunities with the ball but did make a good run in the second half breaking a number of tackles.

    Ezra Ubaldino got the ball early and was able to get outside his direct opponent who looked to tackle him high. Ezra Ubaldino was able to fend him away as he made about thirty metres down the left touch line.

    In March of 2018 Ezra Ubaldino started in the second row for a Titans U15 side that defeated a U15 Western Mustangs selection six tries to three, in that match, Ezra Ubaldino was the Titans best in my opinion that day and also scored a strong second half try.

    Ezra Ubaldino started Round One of the 2019 GCRL U16 Division One competition in the centres for Burleigh in their match against Coomera.

    Ezra Ubaldino played a total in six regular season matches for Burleigh in the GCRL U16 Division One competition splitting time between the centre and second row scoring four tries including scoring in Round Nine against Currumbin, Round Thirteen against Southport and Round Fourteen against Mudgeeraba.

    In the Round Twelve match against Southport, Ezra Ubaldino kicked his first goal of the season and in fact for a number of seasons I believe.

    In Week One of the U16 Division One Finals series Ezra Ubaldino started in the centres and scored as Burleigh defeated Helensvale 42 – 20. Ezra Ubaldino also started in the centres in Round Two of the Finals against Coomera.

    Ezra Ubaldino made his GCRL U18 Division One debut in Round Ten starting from the bench against Southport.

    Ezra Ubaldino made his GCRL U18 Division Two debut in Round Ten starting at lock against the Robina Raptors.

    Late in 2018 Ezra Ubaldino was named in the Gold Coast Vikings U16 Training Squad for the 2019 U16 South East Queensland Challenge.

    In Match Day One of that competition early in 2019 Ezra Ubaldino scored for Gold Coast Vikings U16 White as they defeated Brisbane Green 32 – 10 and also scored on match Day Three.

    In the 2018 U16 Division One competition, Ezra Ubaldino played in five matches including the finals scoring four tries. Ezra Ubaldino’s two regular season tries came against Southport and Helensvale.

    In week two of the U16 Division One finals series Ezra Ubaldino started in the second row and scored for Burleigh as they overcame a resilient Helensvale side 24 – 18.

    In Week Three of the U16 Division One finals series Ezra Ubaldino started in the second row and scored as Burleigh went down 28 – 26 to Currumbin in the Preliminary Final.

    In 2018 the PBC student represented South Coast at the U15 ASSRL Championships and from there was selected in the Queensland White side for the ASSRL Championships. In those Championships Ezra Ubaldino played in three matches and achieved a 100% try scoring strike rate after scoring a double against the ACT on Day One and also scoring against the ACT on the final day of the Championships.

    In 2017 at the start of this season Ezra Ubaldino transferred from the Currumbin Eagles to the Burleigh Bears where he played in the U15 Division GCJRL competition even though the PBC student was still eligible for the U14 age group. Ezra Ubaldino was part of the Titans U15 side that played a Balmain Tigers selection late in 2017 with the young man being outstanding in that match.

    Ezra Ubaldino played nine matches for Burleigh in the GCJRL U15 Division One competition including their semi-final campaign scoring three tries in the process. Ezra Ubaldino scored a double against the Southport Tigers and late in the season also scored against the Coomera Cutters. Ezra Ubaldino also played one match for Burleigh in the U15 Division Two competition against the Ormeau Shearers in May 2017.

    2016 saw Ezra Ubaldino represent the Gold Coast Vikings at the U13 level where they went through the Hill Stumer Championships undefeated and from there Ezra Ubaldino was selected in the South East Queensland White side for the Queensland Age Championships. For the Vikings in 2016 Ezra Ubaldino was selected in the centres but for South East Queensland White he was selected in the second row.

    At the 2016 Hill Stumer Championships held at Carina, Ezra Ubaldino played in all three of the U13 Vikings matches including scoring a great hat trick in the Sunday game against Ipswich including two long range efforts in a 58 – 6 victory for the Gold Coast youngsters.

    In 2014, Ezra Ubaldino represented South Coast in the QPSRL U11 competition, a competition that South Coast dominated and went on to win, scoring 132 and conceding only 12 across the five matches. In those championships, Ezra Ubaldino scored three tries, one each against Capricornia, Sunshine Coast and Met West. Runaway Bay centre Connor Te Kani and Ormeau five eight Syris Schmidt were also part of that South Coast side and all three have continued to take positive steps with their development and look to have a lot of potential to work with moving forward.

    The pace and power in terms of how Ezra Ubaldino runs the ball is the outstanding feature of his game, he takes the ball to the line with speed, but he does not just put his head down and rush forward, he uses quick and subtle footwork prior to the line and seems to targets the gaps between defenders and will actively seek out opposing defenders who are slow to move up.

    When the opposition are on the back foot Ezra Ubaldino will target the smaller defenders on the edge of the ruck or wider out and burst through and for a big young bloke he has very good speed over the medium term and has the strength and power to drag defenders with him.

    I would consider that his speed would be considered above average for a centre but plays faster as a result of him timing his runs so well that the dummy half can present a flat pass to him and also as a result of the power that he runs at. Ezra Ubaldino also has a very powerful fend especially with his right hand.

    Against Ipswich in the U13 Hill Stumer Championships in 2016 Ezra Ubaldino made a long break down the left hand touch line with no support, when confronted by the fullback, Ezra Ubaldino smartly changed the ball into his left arm and produced a great right hand fend when the Ipswich fullback went to tackle him high, knocking the Ipswich fullback to the ground with one push. Ezra Ubaldino then continued on to score a great solo try in the left corner, being one of three that he scored on the day.

    The defensive side of his game is similarly effective, Ezra Ubaldino does not just charge wildly up looking for a huge hit (well maybe sometimes but not often), but is cold and calculating in where and when he hits. Quite a few of his tackles resulted in a knock on by the opposition as the ball came loose as a result of the impact of the tackle, he just hits so hard.

    Ezra Ubaldino drives hard with his legs and always uses his shoulder and core body strength to drive into his opponent and force them off balance or off their running line.

    With his strength and technique Ezra Ubaldino should likely always be considered a plus defender regardless of age group or quality of opponent. Ezra Ubaldino also has some aggression in his game which he will need to ensure that he moderates it and channels it correctly which I am sure will come with additional experience.

    Ezra Ubildino has been named in the Burleigh MM Cup squad for the 2020 version of the competition and post the MM Cup will play for Burleigh in the GCLR U18 Division One competition after the MM Cup competition concludes.

    From a position perspective prior to this season I would have argued that Ezra Ubaldino’s long term future lies in the centres but after his performances in the second row this season playing primarily against players a year older than him, I now have to change my thinking and based on the 2018 season a long term future in the second row is certainly on the cards.

    From a player comparison perspective think of New Zealand Warriors tough hard aggressive young second rower Isaiah Pappalli as a good comparison for Ezra Ubaldino, both just charge at the line without fear and really try to hit as hard as possible in every tackle.

    People watching Ezra Ubaldino play for the first time may think that he is all speed, power and strength but whilst he does display those attributes there is a lot more to his game revolving around positioning, awareness, timing and anticipation.

    With time and maturity the young man could really develop into a special player. Ezra Ubaldino is a very very aggressive player but with experience and maturity there is little doubt that that will develop into a strength of his game.

    The future is certainly bright on the Gold Coast with young players like Ezra Ubaldino coming through the ranks.

  6. #1146
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    Kaden Somerville. (Revised) He is a local young hooker from the Burleigh Bears junior rugby league club on the Gold Coast and recently signed a two year contract with the Titans to be part of their JTS Program.

    Kaden Somerville has already played a number of matches in Titans colours including starting at hooker for the Titans U16 side in their match against the Newcastle Knights in January of 2019. Kaden Somerville was very strong over the course of the match, especially defensively, starting both halves before being interchanged around the middle of each half.

    When the Titans had the scrum feed, Kaden Somerville packed in at lock so that he was in a position to distribute the ball to the Titans backline or look to exploit a scrum blind side move.

    Kaden Somerville’s most recent match for the Titans was when he started at lock for the Titans U16 squad in their early October 2019 match against PNG at Pizzey Park with the Titans coming away big winners on the Friday night.

    Kaden Somerville also started at hooker for the Titans U15 side in their late 2018 match against a Balmain Tigers U15 touring side.

    Kaden Somerville started Round One of the 2019 GCRL U16 Division One competition at lock for Burleigh in their match against Coomera.

    Kaden Somerville played in eleven GCRL U16 Division One matches in 2019 for Burleigh playing hooker, lock and second row. It was his first match in the second row that saw Kaden Somerville scored for the first time in 2019 when he scored a double in Round Nine against Currumbin which ended up being his only tries of the regular season.

    Week One of the GCRL U16 Division One Finals series saw Kaden Somerville start at lock for Burleigh as they defeated Helensvale and he also started there in Week Two as Burleigh’s season ended.

    Kaden Somerville was also on the bench for the Burleigh U18 Division One Grand Final winning side as they defeated Southport 28 – 12. When he came on in the Grand Final Kaden Somerville spent time in the front row.

    Kaden Somerville was also involved in PBC’s Langer Cup Reserve Grade campaign including standing out in their Round Two win over St Mary’s in Toowoomba.

    Kaden Somerville was named in the 2019 South East Queensland White U16 side for the Queensland Age Championships after an outstanding series of matches for the Gold Coast Vikings earlier in the season. Kaden Somerville came off the bench for the representative side, spending time both at hooker and in the back row.

    In 2018 Kaden Somerville played for the Burleigh Bears U15 Division One side, spending the majority of the season at hooker.

    In the GCRL U15 Division One competition Kaden Somerville played in nine matches including Burleigh’s two finals matches scoring two tries, with those tries coming in consecutive matches in late July 2018 against the Robina Raptors and the Mudgeeraba Redbacks.

    In Week One of the U15 Division One finals Kaden Somerville started at hooker as Burleigh defeated Southport 72 -2 and also started at hooker in Week Two of the finals as Burleigh were knocked out after going down 34 – 24 against Runaway Bay.

    Team mates in Kaden Somerville’s U15 Division One side are fellow Titans contracted youngster the outstanding lock Bailey Martin and Titans U15 Development Squad members such as second rower Flynn Daniel and winger Jayden Wright.

    In 2017 Kaden Somerville played the season prior to injury at the U14 Division One level. Unfortunately due to injury Kaden Somerville was only able to play in two U14 Division One contest for Burleigh but did score in both outings which were against Runaway Bay and eventual premiers Ormeau.

    In 2014 Kaden Somerville represented South Coast in the U11 QPSRL competition. South Coast went through the competition undefeated easily, with Kaden Somerville scoring a try against Wide Bay in round two of the competition.

    Kaden Somerville is an extremely talented all round hooker, who excels at all three critical aspects that a modern day hooker must have to be successful, those being his distribution and game management out of dummy half, selective running out of dummy half and defending in the centre of the ruck where he is more effective than people would think when they first see him play.

    In terms of his distribution out of dummy half, he is extremely efficient in his passing and there is no wasted movement or energy as he passes in one motion off the ground rather than two distinct movements like many hookers where they first stand first then pass.

    There is no discernible difference between his passing from either side of his body, and his passes are crisp and flat and also he can pass a reasonable distance off the ground, more so to the right when the first receiver is standing a little wider of the play the ball.

    Where Kaden Somerville is also extremely effective is leading his forwards onto the ball, he passes in front of the forward ensuring no loss of momentum to the run. In short he is a very good game manager from the hooking position.

    Kaden Somerville is also a good communicator on the field, he is constantly encouraging his team both in attack and defence. He does not yell and scream, like the other parts of his game, he is calm and composed and uses positive reinforcement rather than yelling and screaming to get his point across to team mates but he does make it clear that he is in charge however.

    Where Kaden Somerville really stands out in terms of attacking play, is his speed out of dummy half, he is extremely quick and has good footwork to take advantage of tiring forwards, using a step usually off his right foot, although he does not necessary run much out of dummy half.

    The times that he does run though, Kaden Somerville targets forwards who are offside, if the offside forward is called out of the play he has the speed to break into open space. Once in open space Kaden Somerville does not usually have the speed required to finish things off himself but he invariably will make the right decision with the ball in terms of whether to take the tackle or pass to a support player.

    Kaden Somerville’s defence for a hooker is quite good for a young hooker, he does not necessarily hit hard but due to his very good low technique Kaden Somerville can defend effectively one on one against far larger forwards, he sets a good base with his lower body and looks to explode upward with his shoulders to drive into opposing forwards.

    His intensity and continuous effort means that he will track the ball across the field and thus is in a good position when the ball is passed back inside. Kaden Somerville literally tackles everything that moves in the centre of the ruck even though he is usually one of the smaller forwards on the field.

    Kaden Somerville is also very good at getting out of dummy half quickly to put pressure on the opposing teams kickers in all parts of the field and takes a great deal of pride in it.

    Kaden Somerville has been named in the Burleigh MM Cup squad for 2020 and will also play for Burleigh in the U18 Division One competition in 2020 as well as playing for PBC and once again there should be some very good battles in that age group with Keebra Park in the GIO Cup and Langer Cup competitions.

    From a position perspective, with his passing skills and quick first step out of dummy half, I believe that Kaden Somerville is already settled in his long term position of hooker noting however that he has spent some time in other positions this year with Burleigh specifically at lock for both Burleigh and PBC as well as some time in the front row.

    From a player comparison perspective for Kaden Somerville think someone along the lines of (and I am going back awhile) former Manly and New South Wales State of Origin hooker Jim Sedaris as a bigger type of hooker who can run like a front rower or lock bus still has the ability and distribution skills to play at dummy half.

  7. #1147
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    Luke Maiden. (Revised) The Toowoomba born and raised front rower, in late 2018 signed a Titans Rookie contract. From a trivia perspective Luke Maiden is the nephew of former Manly, New South Wales State of Origin and Australian International Nic Kosef (thanks for the information mate).

    Luke Maiden started the 2019 season in outstanding form in the trails including playing one or two trials for the Burleigh reserve grade side.

    Luke Maiden however started the 2019 season proper with the Burleigh Colts U20 Hastings Deering’s side starting the opening rounds in the front row and was particularly dominating in Round Three against the Tweed Heads Seagulls.

    Luke Maiden continued his dominance throughout the 2019 Hastings Deering’s Colts season including a huge match in Round Twelve against Sunshine Coast when he scored a first half double. Luke Maiden’s first try was quite simple, he was two off the ruck on the left side with Burleigh attacking, hooker Lachlan Turnbull ran out of dummy half to his left and turned the ball back underneath to Luke Maiden to score in a huge gap.

    Luke Maiden’s second try in many respects was just as easy, with Burleigh a metre out from the Falcons line, Luke Maiden simply ran at the inside shoulder of the Sunshine Coast defender off a good pass from Zac McCormack to score easily two metres from the left upright.

    Luke Maiden also scored in Round Seventeen against Tweed Heads when he ran onto a short pass from hooker Lachlan Turnbull to crash over under the posts from close range. It initially looked like he was going to be held up but Luke Maiden spun and rotated counter clock wise to get the ball down.

    In Week Two of the Finals Luke Maiden started from the bench in Burleigh’s 42 – 12 win against Norths.

    In total in the 2019 Hastings Deering’s Colts competition, Luke Maiden played in seventeen matches starting all bar Week Two of the Finals in the front row.

    In the 2019 Hastings Deering’s Colts Player of the Year Award tally Luke Maiden finished with eight votes.

    Luke Maiden made his GCRL First Grade debut off the bench for Burleigh in Round Twelve against Southport and also came off the bench in Round Thirteen against Ormeau, Round Fifteen against Tugun, Round Sixteen against Runaway Bay and Round Seventeen against Bilambil.

    Luke Maiden’s first GCRL First Grade try came against Bilambil in Round Seventeen.

    In total in the 2019 GCRL First Grade competition Luke Maiden played in seven matches starting primarily from the interchange bench including starting their in Burleigh’s 26 - 12 Major Semi-Final victory over Currumbin.

    Luke Maiden also started for bench as Burleigh won the GCRL First Grade Grand Final by defeating Southport 30 -12.

    After an outstanding MM Cup campaign in 2017, Luke Maiden in 2018 once again played in the MM Cup for the Western Mustangs and just 2017, once that competition concluded he moved immediately to the Western Mustangs Hastings Deering’s U20 Colts squad.

    In his second season in the MM Cup with the Western Mustangs Luke Maiden played in all six matches and had a 50% try scoring strike rate. Luke Maiden scored in Rounds One, Five and Seven against Victoria, Sunshine Coast and South’s Logan respectively.

    His progression to the Western Mustangs Hastings Deering’s Colts side saw Luke Maiden play in eight matches. Luke Maiden came into the side in Round Eight against Tweed Heads when he started on the interchange bench. Luke Maiden has also started on the interchange bench in Rounds Ten Eleven and thirteen against the Mackay Cutters South’s Logan and the Easts Tigers respectively.

    Luke Maiden moved in the starting side in Round Sixteen against Norths starting the match at lock. In total in his eight matches, Luke Maiden started two matches in the front row, one at lock and five from the interchange bench.

    Luke Maiden’s sole try of the 2018 Colts season came in Round Fourteen against the Ipswich Jets.

    In addition to his Western Mustangs duties at the MM Cup and Colts levels, Luke Maiden also found the time to play for Southern Suburbs in the U18 Toowoomba Rugby league competition including starting in the front row in Round One against Toowoomba Valleys where he scored in Southern Suburbs 26 – 8 victory.

    In total for Southern Suburbs in the U18 Toowoomba rugby League competition including the finals series, Luke maiden played in seven matches scoring four tries which came against Toowoomba Valleys, Goondiwindi and South Burnett in the regular season.

    In the Preliminary Final against Dalby, Luke Maiden started in the front row and scored a try in the 12th minute of the second half as Southern Suburbs defeated Dalby 44 – 4 to progress to the Grand Final.

    In the U18 Toowoomba Rugby League Grand Final against Highfields and Districts Luke Maiden started in the front row in the 38 – 10 win.

    In 2018 Luke Maiden also played two Toowoomba Rugby League First Grade matches making his debut against Toowoomba Valleys in late June and also playing against Goondiwindi in late July.

    At the Western Mustangs Awards Presentation night in November 2017, Luke Maiden was awarded the Western Mustangs Players Player award.

    In 2017 after being part of the Western Mustangs MM Cup winning side early in 2017, Luke Maiden graduated to the Western Mustangs U20 Colts side where he started a number of matches in the front row after starting the MM Cup Grand Final at lock and being a key contributor to the 40 – 30 grand final victory over the South’s Logan Magpies and similarly in the U18 National final against Parramatta.

    Luke Maiden has recently signed a Titans Rookie Contract for the next two seasons, which will cover his time in the U20 Colts competition.

    In 2017 the St Mary’s Toowoomba High School student started all eight of the Western Mustangs MM Cup matches at lock, scoring in Round Two against the Mackay Cutters and also in Round Eight against the Central Crows.

    In 2017 Luke Maiden broke into the Western Mustangs U20 Colts Challenge side in Round Five when he came off the bench against South’s Logan and also started on the bench in Rounds Six and Eight.

    Luke Maiden’s first start at the U20 Colts Challenge level was in Round Nine when he started in the front row against the Burleigh Bears. In total in the U20 Colts competition in 2017 for the Western Mustangs, Luke Maiden played in nine matches, starting four from the interchange bench and five in the front row.

    Luke Maiden also played a number of matches in the Toowoomba Rugby League competition over the course of the 2017 season for Southern Suburbs in the U18 and First Grade competitions. In the U18 TRL competition Luke Maiden played in two matches scoring in the first of those against Highfields and Districts and made his Hutchies A grade debut Toowoomba Valleys in July 2017.

    Luke Maiden is a very solidly built young front rower with a powerful running style and low centre of gravity, which makes him quite difficult to tackle as he is also adept at dropping his shoulder into defenders as he impacts the defensive line. There is no subtlety to his game, he runs straight and hard, with the only concession to this being a slight step off his right foot in occasion prior to impacting the defensive line.

    In a one on one battle with an opponent if they look to hit him around the chest area they will struggle to contain Luke Maiden due to his size and the strength in his legs, a defensive line will always need to commit at least two defensive resources to effectively stop him.

    One thing that Luke Maiden does well is continuing to pump his legs once his initial momentum is halted by the defensive line, he makes more metres than he should as a result. He does not have a real off load to his attacking game, but that is not his role, Luke Maiden’s role is to take the ball into the heart of the opposition’s defensive line and make as many metres as possible.

    Like his attacking game, his defensive methodology is simple and effective in its execution and effectiveness. He moves up and hits the ball carrier as hard as he can, as often as he can, full stop. He is best suited to defending in the centre of the ruck and that is where you will almost always find him and for a solidly built young player.

    Luke Maiden moves well in terms of moving up and back in defence. Luke Maiden’s lateral movement is actually more than reasonable for a front rower as for that matter is his overall straight line speed.

    In 2020 Luke Maiden will once again line up for the Burleigh Colts side where he will be a key member of the side and should also get more matches for Burleigh in the Gold Coast Rugby League First Grade competition and may even get an opportunity for the Bears in the 2020 Queensland Cup competition.

    Luke Maiden is a front rower full stop, no more correspondence needs to be entered into.

    Coming up with an NRL player with similar playing attributes to those of Luke Maiden was not that difficult, he has similar playing attributes to those of Manly forward Jake Trbojevic, although Luke Maiden is physically better. Like Trbojevic however Luke Maiden will work hard all day both in attack and defence and will also bring an intense effort every time that he walks onto the field.

  8. #1148
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    Taine Ujdur-Berghan. The young PBC and Burleigh Bears five eight is not likely to finish near the top of any try scoring list in any given season but that is in no way reflective of his contribution to his side’s success regardless of whether that is at school boy or club level.

    Taine Ujdur-Berghan started Round One of the 2019 GCRL U18 Division One competition for Nerang but with their demise moved to Burleigh, starting with their U18 Division Two side, spending time at fullback, hooker and half over the course of the season.

    Taine Ujdur-Berghan made his first start for the Burleigh U18 Division Two side in Round Two against Tugun, scoring in their draw. In total Taine Ujdur-Berghan played in eight 2019 U18 Division Two regular season matches and three Division One matches.

    In addition to his debut try in Round Two, Taine Ujdur-Berghan also scored in Rounds Three and Eight against Runaway Bay and Currumbin respectively in the U18 Division Two competition.

    In Week Two of the GCRL U18 Division Two Finals Taine Ujdur-Berghan started at hooker against Currumbin and then was on the bench for the Burleigh U18 Division One side in their Week Two Final win against Southport and also started at hooker in the Grand Final as Burleigh defeated Robina.

    For the Burleigh U18 Division One side Taine Ujdur-Berghan primarily came off the bench playing in a variety of roles including in the halves and hooker, in total playing three matches in that competition for the Bears with those matches coming against Helensvale, Runaway Bay and Bilambil.

    Taine Ujdur-Berghan was also a more than solid performer for the PBC Open rugby league side in 2019 including starting at five eight in the Langer Cup local derby against Keebra Park and also starting at five eight in PBC’s heart breaking Gold Point GIO Cup Queensland semi-final 23 – 22 loss to Marsden State High School.

    Late in 2018 Taine Ujdur-Berghan was part of the Titans U16 squad played matches in September against PNG and New South Wales Country U16 sides.

    Taine Ujdur-Berghan attends PBC as part of their rugby league excellence program and is the regular starting five eight in their Year Ten side.

    Taine Ujdur-Berghan started Round One of the 2018 GCRL U16 Division One competition at five eight for Nerang as they defeated Runaway Bay 60 – 0 with centre Trey Peni scoring four tries in that match. Fellow PBC Year Ten student Jaiden West also scored for Nerang in the Round One match.

    Post that Round One match, Taine Ujder-Berghan played in an additional eight matches for Nerang scoring two regular season tries, with the first coming in Round Six in a 32 – 8 win over Helensvale. Taine Ujdur-Berghan’s other try came two rounds later against Runaway Bay.

    Taine Ujder-Berghan missed a portion of the GCRL U16 Division One Finals series but did start at five eight for the Roosters in the Grand Final as they defeated Currumbin 24 – 8.

    In 2017 Taine Ujdur-Berghan played in thirteen matches in the GCRL U15 Division One competition for the Nerang Roosters scoring a solitary try which came around mid-season against Currumbin.

    Taine Ujder-Berghan just has a great passing game in all aspects, he has a very good long passing game and can get the ball out to his centres quickly and he is equally adept at taking the ball to the line and delivering a short pass to hole running backrowers just as the defence is converging on him. There just is not a pass that he cannot throw with timing and precision.

    Taine Ujder-Berghan gets a very good spiral on the ball from both sides of his body and leads his outside attackers into the ball, enabling them to maintain the momentum of their run. A key attribute to how he plays is his ability to organise and direct his team around the field as well as adjusting his game to the specific situations within a game.

    Taine Ujder-Berghan is not necessarily the quickest five eight running around but he does have some reasonable speed off the mark, which is complemented by the fact that he runs at the right moment, for example when he is drifting across field he will dummy and run when defenders anticipate the pass rather than focussing on him running the ball. Taine Ujder-Berghan’s running skills compliment his ability to put runners into holes rather than the other way around.

    Taine Ujder-Berghan’s His kicking game is very accurate, and even though he is not a big player he can generate very good distance on his kicks whilst at the same time not losing any accuracy, thus he finds the ground for a lot of his kicks.

    Taine Ujder-Berghan can also kick pin point bombs, allowing plenty of time for his chasers to get to the ball as it is coming down close to the try line. He is also a decent goal kicker but I have not seen enough of him kicking to have an opinion as to whether he can be a front line kicker for his side moving forward.

    Taine Ujder-Berghan is a very good defender for the half back position, this includes against opposing halves who will try to use footwork and evasion to beat him or against big wide running forwards. No matter who is running at him, his timing, strength, lateral movement and technique are all well above average even verging on plus, not just for his position but for his age group in general.

    Taine Ujdur-Berghan is U18 eligible once again in 2020 and has been named in both the Burleigh and Tweed Heads MM Cup squads with that to be sorted out and will also be a key member of the Burleigh GCRL U18 Division One side post the MM Cup competition.

    In 2020 Taine Ujdur-Berghan will also continue to be part of the PBC school boy rugby league program and will push for a spot in their Langer Cup A and GIO Cup side.

    Whilst Taine Ujdur-Berghan has played five eight for the majority of his junior rugby league career I was impressed with the way that he played at hooker for Burleigh in 2019 and thus whilst I believe that he will ultimately end up in the halves, a dummy half role is certainly not out of the question.

    A current NRL player with similar running and distribution skills is Titans NRL player Tannah Boyd. Both show flashes of outstanding potential and just need experience on the field to continue their current development trajectory.

  9. #1149
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    Daniel Butterini. (Revised) He is a local young centre originally from just south of the border, who has previously been part of the Titans High Performance Program and is also at PBC State High School as part of their Rugby League excellence program.

    In 2019 Daniel Butterini was part of the Tweed Heads Seagulls MM Cup squad however did not feature in any of their matches.

    Daniel Butterini was on song in Round Two of the GCRL U18 Division One competition scoring a try and kicking five goals for Currumbin as they defeated Bilambil 30-4. He started the match in the centres for the Eagles.

    In total for Currumbin in the GCRL U18 Division One competition Daniel Butterini played in six matches before making a move to Murwillumbah in the NRRRL U18 competition.

    Daniel Butterini’s first match for Murwillumbah in the U18 NRRRL competition was in Round Thirteen against Lower Clarence with his first NRRRL U18 try coming in Round Fourteen against Ballina and his second in the regular season finale being Round Eighteen against Tweed Heads. In total Daniel Butterini played in five regular season matches.

    His 2019 NRRRL U18 campaign ended when Murwillumbah were defeated 26 – 10 by Byron Bay in the Elimination Final.

    Daniel Butterini made his NRRRL First Grade debut in Round Seventeen of the 2019 season for Murwillumbah against Byron Bay and added to that in Week One of the NRRRL First Grade Finals series when he came off the bench in a 40 – 6 win over Casino RSM.

    Daniel Butterini in 2019 was once again part of the PBC Open A rugby league side including starting from the bench in the Langer Cup A derby against Keebra Park in June.

    Daniel Butterini was also part of the Titans U15 squad that played against a Balmain Tigers selection late in 2017 year, in that match Daniel Butterini spent the majority of the game in the centres.

    At the start of the 2018 season, Daniel Butterini was part of the Gold Coast Vikings Yellow side that competed in the U16 South East Queensland Challenge and post that competition was called up to be part of the South East Queensland Green side for the Queensland U16 Age Championships playing all four of their matches including the Championship final which SEQ Green won 30 – 18 SEQ White.

    Daniel Butterini played his club rugby league this season with Currumbin playing in twelve U16 Division One matches including the finals series scoring three tries in total, including a double against Mudgeeraba and also scored early in the season against Runaway Bay.

    Daniel Butterini started for Currumbin in the U16 Division One Grand Final but was on the losing side with Nerang coming out victorious 24 – 8.

    Daniel Butterini also played one match this season in the U17 Division One competition with that match coming against the Bilambil Jets late in the 2018 season.

    Daniel Butterini was selected this season in the South Coast U15 QSSRL side in 2017. Earlier in the 2017 season Daniel Butterini was also selected in the Group 18 U15 squad after representing Group 18 at the U14 level in 2016 where he played primarily at fullback in the New South Wales Country Age Championships.

    In late 2015 Daniel Butterini was named on the wing for the Titans U13 development squad for their match against a Toowoomba U14 selection, but unfortunately he did not participate in the match due to injury. In 2014 Daniel Butterini was named in the New South Wales North Coast U12 rugby league side from the Burringbar Public School in Murwillumbah.

    For a centre, Daniel Butterini is a strong young man who does not rely just on his size and speed and using his natural running balance to either engage the opposing defenders and off load, run either an inside or outside shoulder route or an in and away to slow the forward momentum of the defender and accelerate on the outside.

    For a player of his size, Daniel Butterini also has a very good passing game especially to his right side. When the ball is passed out to the back line, Daniel Butterini is very good at straitening up the attacking vector of his team and pass to his outside supports if they have room to move further out wide.

    From a speed perspective Daniel Butterini has above average speed for both his size and position and when he breaks into open space, he will rarely be caught from behind other than from only the fastest of opponents and he is also very good at positioning his support players when he gets to the fullback. The only possible question about Daniel Butterini’s speed is whether it will stay at or near the above average category as he matures and inevitably fills out.

    Defensively Daniel Butterini uses his physical characteristics to good effect, he drives with his shoulder into his opponent and has very good timing in terms of when to come out of the line and certainly has the speed to readjust and chase if his timing is slightly off and his opposing centre gets on his outside.

    For me when I saw him play for either PBC or Burleigh Daniel Butterini was the defensive leader of the three quarter line and other defenders keyed off him in terms of whether to use an up and in methodology and slide to the outside.

    Daniel Butterini on an individual level has the body control to redirect quickly and mirror the movement of the opposing attackers and anticipate what vector the attack comes from and innately understands when to allow the attacking play to develop in from of him and when to come out of the line to disrupt the attacking play prior to its formation.

    Daniel Butterini is U18 eligible again in 2020 but has not been named in either of the Tweed Heads or Burleigh Cup squads to date. He may line-up however for the Northern Rivers Titans U18 Laurie Daley Cup squad come early 2020.

    Post either competition Daniel Butterini will play for Murwillumbah in the NRRRL U18 competition and I am sure will add to his two match NRRRL First Grade tally from 2019.

    Daniel Butterini has played primarily in the centres throughout his junior rugby league career but has spent some time in the second row this season. For me though it is far too early to write Daniel Butterini off in terms of not being able to stay in the centres long term.

    A player with a similar playing style for me for Daniel Butterini would be Cronulla Sharks centre Ricky Leutele, they are both around the same size and look to use their size and speed to their advantage to dominate the opponent directly in front of them.

  10. #1150
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    Dakota Whalan. (Updated) He is a talented hooker who in 2019 was part of the Burleigh U18 Division One side.

    Early in the 2019 season Dakota Whalan played one match off the bench for the Burleigh MM Cup side with that match being in Round Five against Souths Logan.

    Over the course of the 2019 season, Dakato Whalan started at hooker in all twelve of Burleigh’s matches in the U18 Division One competition scoring five tries including a Round Thirteen hat trick against Bilambil and against Helensvale in Round Two and Runaway Bay in Round Eleven.

    In Week Two of the U18 Division One Finals series Dakota Whalan started at hooker for Burleigh in their victory 34 – 8 against Southport to progress directly to the Grand Final contributing a try to the dominating victory.

    Dakota Whalan started the 2019 U18 Division One Grand Final at hooker and had a try assist in the second half when he nipped down a short blind side to put Noah Gafa over with a short well timed pass.

    Dakota Whalan finished his 2017 rugby league commitments by attending a Titans U16 Elite Performance camp at Lenox Heads and at that camp was part of the Titans side that played against the Western Mustangs side that also attended the camp. Not that it is necessarily relevant but the U16 Titans High Performance Unit won in a high quality match eight tries to two.

    The young hooker started in the 2017 season at hooker for the Gold Coast Vikings Green U16 side that played a Western Mustangs U16 selection in Toowoomba recently with the Gold Coast Green side winning the match 24 – 8 against a committed opposition side. As noted the Titans linked youngster represented Gold Coast Green in the South East Queensland U16 pre-season competition and then progressed to the GCJRL U16 Division One competition.

    Dakota Whalan started off the U16 Division One season with the Southport Tigers playing in four matches for them before obtaining a clearance to move to the Burleigh Bears. Dakota Whalan made his U16 Division One debut for Burleigh in early June against Ormeau and in total played seven matches in the Burleigh’s maroon and white including starting at hooker in Burleigh’s 34 – 4 Grand Final loss against Currumbin.

    Dakota Whalan scored two late season tries while playing for Burleigh with those tries coming in consecutive weeks against Currumbin in the final regular season round and in Burleigh’s first semi-final against Helensvale.

    Dakota Whalan played the 2016 season for the Southport Tigers in the U15 Division One competition on the Gold Coast where he scored three tries from seven matches, including a double in the first regular season round against Beaudesert and Dakota Whalan also scored late in the season against the Helensvale Hornets.

    Dakota Whalan is a vocal dummy half with a goal to lead his team around the field and determine when the forwards take the ball up and when the ball is directed out to the backline. Dakota Whalan looks to lead his forwards onto the ball and provides a flat pass to enable his forwards to time their run onto the ball. Dakota Whalan aims to be the team’s general from dummy half and control the pace of the match and the axis from which his team directs their attack and also from what part of the field.

    Running with the ball Dakota Whalan has reasonable speed off the mark, probably in the average category for a hooker but normally runs off the back of a big run from one of his forwards so that he runs when the defensive line is still retreating back to their 10 metre mark.

    Just like he is when he is at dummy half Dakota Whalan is vocal when he is in the defensive line looking to direct his forwards towards where the ball is likely heading and individually identifying which forward defends which attacker. Dakota Whalan certainly has a tough streak and will look to hit opposing forwards regardless of their size as hard as possible and looks to finish off each tackle with aggression. Dakota Whalan is also a solid worker when at marker and will chase and look to harass both ball runners and tactical kickers alike.

    Dakota Whalan is U18 eligible again in 2020 but has been named in the Burleigh Colts side. In 2020 Dakota Whalen will play for Burleigh in the U18 Division One competition as they look to go back to back after last season’s success.

    Dakota Whalan has spent the last couple of season exclusively at hooker and I can see no justification for an alteration to that particular situation as he moves forward in his rugby league career.

    From a player comparison perspective I can see aspects of a playing style similar to that of Sydney Roosters Jake Friend in the play of Dakota Whalan as a hooker who looks to control his forward pack from the dummy half position and lets his team know what he wants from them.
    Last edited by mdrew; 17-01-20 at 11:53 PM.

  11. #1151
    Kangaroo
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    Blake Campbell. (Revised) The Titans contracted backrower is held deservedly held in high esteem at the club, a club he has been with since he was 13 years old.

    In 2019 Blake Campbell was part of the Tweed Heads Seagulls Colts side starting either in the second row or at lock in all of his matches including their Elimination Final loss to Mackay captaining the side on a number of occasions. In total Blake Campbell played in fifteen Colts matches scoring four tries starting all in the second row.

    In Round Ten starting at lock Blake Campbell scored a double against the Easts Tigers on both occasions Blake Campbell was on hand to retrieve a Tweed Heads attacking kick to score.

    Blake Campbell also scored in Round Eleven when he charged onto the ball from only two metres out to crash over in the first half from what can only be described as a determined run . Blake Campbell also scored in Round Two against the Townsville Blackhawks.

    In the 2019 Hastings Deering’s Colts Player of the Year Award tally Blake Campbell finished with four votes.

    2018 saw Blake Campbell start off captaining the Tweed Heads MM Cup side and then progressing to the Tweed Heads Colts side.

    Along the way Blake Campbell was selected in the 2018 Queensland U18 side and came off the bench in that game but unfortunately took a head knock which reduced his playing time on the interstate match.

    Blake Campbell captained the 2018 Tweed Heads Seagulls MM Cup side was a standout through the competition including an impressive performance against the North’s Devils in Round One and a dominant individual performance in Victoria against the Thunderbolts which included him scoring a double in a big Tweed Heads victory 42 – 10.

    Blake Campbell’s performance in Tweed Heads Round Three win 36 – 6 over the Burleigh Bears was also exceptional.

    In total in the 2018 MM Cup competition Blake Campbell started in the second row for all of Tweed Heads seven matches including their final’s loss to Souths Logan. Across the seven matches Blake Campbell scored four tries. In addition to the two tries against Redcliffe previously mentioned, Blake Campbell also scored in Round Five against the Townsville Blackhawks and in Round Six against Wynnum Manly.

    At the end of the 2018 season Blake Campbell received the 2018 Tweed Heads Seagulls MM Cup Coaches Award.

    Blake Campbell broke into the Tweed Heads Seagulls Colts side in their Round Eleven match against the Northern Pride starting the match in the second row. All told in the Hastings Deering’s Cup to date in the 2018 season, Blake Campbell has played in nine matches and just like his debut has started all of those matches in the second row.

    Blake Campbell has scored two tries, the first of which came in Round Eighteen against Souths Logan and he also scored against the Mackay Cutters when he ran a good line (outside shoulder route) on the right side of the field to burst through the defence from around ten to twelve metres out and then outpaced the fullback to score.

    In the 2018 GCRL U19 competition this season for Runaway Bay Blake Campbell has played just the three matches as a result of his Queensland U18 and Tweed Heads MM and Colts commitments but in his second U19 game of the season he scored a double against Ormeau and in his third U19 match the following weekend Blake Campbell converted one of Runaway Bay’s tries in a win against Mudgeeraba.

    Blake Campbell made his Doug Lipp Cup debut for Runaway Bay against Currumbin in mid-June 2018 after playing in the U19 fixture earlier in the day.

    Blake Campbell’s form this season is not a surprise considering his trial form including a standout performance in a trial against the South’s Logan Magpies at Waterford in February. That trial at Waterford was a difficult one for Tweed Heads as they went down to Souths Logan but Blake Campbell was very good that night, and was in every match since.

    To round out an outstanding 2017 campaign Blake Campbell was selected in November to be part of the 2018 Queensland U18 Emerging Origin squad which came together from January 21 to 24 this year for their first training camp. Other training camps are scheduled over the course of the 2018 season prior to the annual match against New South Wales.

    Over the course of the 2017 season Blake Campbell played a number of matches in the MM Cup competition for Tweed Heads Seagulls and also played for the Runaway Bay Seagulls in the Gold Coast Rugby League competition.

    For the Tweed Heads Seagulls in the 2017 MM Cup competition Blake Campbell started all six of Tweed Heads matches in the second row and showed his try scoring ability crossing for four tries including a double in Round One against the Ipswich Jets, a try in Round Three against eventual champions the Western Mustangs and his final try of the MM Cup competition came in Round Six in the local derby against the Burleigh Bears.

    In the red, white and blue of Runaway Bay in 2017 Blake Campbell has played eleven matches in the U17 Division One competition and also three matches in the U19 GCRL competition. At the U17 level Blake Campbell scored four tries and kicked four goals for 24 points in total including a Round Two double against Bilambil and also tries late in the season against Helensvale and Mudgeeraba.

    Blake Campbell made his U19 debut in May 2017 against Southport and has also played matches at that level against Mudgeeraba and Southport a second time.

    In 2016 Blake Campbell played his football at the U16 level both in terms of club rugby league and in the CC Cup during the 2016 season. Blake Campbell as also involved in Coombabah State High School’s great GIO Cup campaign where he actually played on the wing in a number of games including a nationally televised match against Townsville’s Kirwan High School.

    Blake Campbell stellar play was rewarded in 2016 when early in the year he was selected in the Queensland Academy of Sport U16 squad, before being named in the interchange bench for the Queensland U16 team in their annual match against New South Wales. Fellow Titans player Laz Sua was also part of the Queensland team that night which took place as a State of Origin curtain raiser. Unfortunately the Queensland side lost 12 – 10.

    In the CC competition for Gold Coast White in 2016, Blake Campbell crossed for four tries two of which came against Gold Coast Green in Rounds Two and Five. Blake Campbell also scored a double in GC White’s semi-final loss to the Toowoomba Clydesdales. In all of his matches in the CC competition for Gold Coast White Blake Campbell started in the second row.

    On more than one occasion in 2017 Blake Campbell was mentioned by Titans High Performance Junior Co-ordinator Jamie McCormack as being one of his team’s best in the weekly update posted on the Titans Official Site during the CC/MM season.

    From a club perspective, Blake Campbell played for Runaway Bay in the U16 Division One competition playing in six matches and contributing seven tries over the course of the 2016 season. Six of his seven tries came from doubles coming against Burleigh on two separate occasions and also against Mudgeeraba, with his seventh try coming against the Helensvale Hornets.

    Blake Campbell was been in the Titans junior development system for a couple of years now, and is one of a number of talented backrowers in our system and certainly in the region. He has represented the Vikings and Kookaburra’s on multiple occasions in the different age groups over the last couple of years and is part of the Gold Coast Rugby League Academy program in 2015, and was part of the Titans U14 development side that drew 32 all against a giant Samoan team at the end of 2014 at Burleigh.

    Blake Campbell is a wide running backrower with a very good turn of speed once he breaks through the line and will outpace all but the quickest cover defenders. He has the ability to use footwork before the line, especially on the ends of the ruck where he has a good in and away as well as a very good fend to complement his footwork.

    On top of those attributes, Blake Campbell is impressive at running good lines on the fringes of the ruck and constantly picks the right holes to run into thus making the play makers on his team look good. Even though Blake Campbell is good on the edge of the ruck, he takes his share of runs in the middle where he uses foot work prior to the line so as not to absorb huge hits against, usually larger forward packs. He is also a disciplined player who rarely gives away penalties and also has good hands.

    From a speed perspective his speed would easily be considered above average for a backrower and actually quite close to be considered in the plus category, both in terms of speed off the mark as well as sustainable top end speed. Clearly his pace was one of the reasons that the Coombabah coaches played him on the wing on occasion where he certainly did not let anybody down.

    One of Blake Campbell’s tries in Round Two of the MM Cup this season against Victoria highlighted both his strength and speed. Blake Campbell took the ball on the right side of the ruck and took the line on directly, Blake Campbell pushed out of a front on tackle by one of the giant Victorian front rowers and then bounced to the outside, using his speed to get around a number of defenders and also using his speed and a strong left arm fend pushed through a gap between the Thunderbolt left centre and left wing to score an outstanding individual try near the right corner of the field.

    Blake Campbell’s second try against the Victorian Thunderbolts came as a result of his speed. Half Tom Dearden put in a good grubber kick, Blake Campbell timed his run perfectly and outpaced the Victorian cover defence to dive on the ball to score a good second half try for the Seagulls.

    Defensively Blake Campbell looks to wrap up the ball on initial contact, he will not constantly come up with big hits, but will rarely miss tackles and also covers across the field very well, meaning he is usually in good positions to make a tackle if the ball is turned back inside and also to make cover defending tackles if breaks are made wider out.

    Blake Campbell’s strength and mobility also means that he is an effective defender on the fringes (sorry cannot bring myself to use the term edge defender) of the ruck against both big forwards and smaller halves alike.

    Blake Campbell is quick enough to get to most outside backs in cover defence. Due to his speed and positional sense he is usually one of the first players down field in relation to kick chase as well. Blake Campbell’s above average speed is also a reason why he is such a good cover defender.

    Blake Campbell will be part of the Tweed Heads Seagulls Colts side once again in 2020 and it also would not surprise if he makes his Queensland Cup debut sometime over the course of the 2020 season. It is also likely over the course of the 2020 season that Blake Campbell will play a number of matches for Runaway Bay in the Gold Coast Rugby League First Grade competition.

    Even though Blake Campbell spent some time on the wing in schoolboy rugby league for Coombabah in 2016 for me he has played almost exclusively in the second row in 2017 and so far in 2018 and that is where his future lies as a wide running second rower who knows how to get to the try line as well as a player who will do a lot of the little things well, such as chasing kicks, defending inside passes, leading by example, getting quick play the balls etc.

    From a style perspective think of a young Ryan Hoffman of the Melbourne Storm and former New South Wales State of Origin player as a player comparison for Blake Campbell as a well-rounded backrower with the ability to break the line by himself or as a result of running a good line and then has the pace to finish things off consistently by himself as well as being just as damaging defensively.

    You can also, like Hoffman throw positive leadership skills into the mix when talking about Blake Campbell who certainly has a long NRL (if not higher) career in front of him.

  12. #1152
    Kangaroo
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    Jaylan To’o. The outstanding Titans contracted youngster missed the opening two rounds of the 2019 Hastings Deering’s Colts competition, but started Round Three for Tweed Heads against the Burleigh Bears at fullback and maintained his place in the starting line-up at fullback for Round Four against the Central Queensland Capra’s.

    Jaylon To’O had a particularly impressive match in Round Eleven from fullback against the Northern Pride recording two try assists. Mid-way through the first half, Jaylon To’O got to dummy half around a metre out from the Northern Pride line, he took two quick steps to his right a popped a great short ball to fellow Titan Blake Campbell to crash over.

    Jaylon To’O’s second try assist of the match came right on full time when he threw a great long cut out ball this time to his left right onto the chest of Callum Boomer who burst through the gap to score in the last minute of the match.

    Jaylon To’O also scored in Round Nineteen against the Mackay Cutters from the fullback position. After a strong run from fellow Titans Blake Campbell, Jaylon To’O got into dummy half around nine metres out in from of the goal posts.

    Taking advantage of a quick play the ball, Jaylon To’O took off out of dummy half to his left running at an approximate 45 degree running with the ball in two hands (I know that carry on about that but it really does put the defence in two minds) he took advantage of a dis organised and back peddling defensive lien to charge over to score mid-way between the left goal post and the touch line.

    Jaylon To’O added a further try in Round Twenty Two against Souths Logan from the fullback position and also scored from fullback in Round Twenty Three against the Northern Pride.

    In relation to his try against the Northern Pride Jaylon To’O received the ball and ran to the right of the play the ball dummying to his right around seven metres out from the line. After contact with the defence, Jaylon To’O spun around 360 degrees clockwise maintaining his balance whilst doing so putting the ball down about seven metres from the left corner post.

    Jaylon To’O also had a try assist in the match, once again on the left side of the field Jaylon To’O drew in the defence before putting a pass to his left on the chest of debutant Caleb Hodges who crashed over around five metres from the left corner post.

    Jaylon To’O moved to right centre for Tweed Heads Week One Elimination Final loss to the Mackay Cutters 23 – 10 but was one of two Tweed Heads try scorers in the match. Five eight Toby Sexton took the ball down a short blind side and popped a short ball to Jaylon To’O who cruised through a gap and scored from forty metres out untouched.

    In total in the 2019 Hastings Deering’s Colts competition Jaylon To’O played in nineteen matches. Including Tweed Heads Elimination Final scoring six tries. Jaylon To’O started all bar one of his 2019 Hastings Deering’s Colts matches at fullback bar Round Ten against the Easts Tigers when he started at five eight.

    In the 2019 Hastings Deering’s Colts Player of the Year Award tally Jaylon To’O finished with a solid nine votes.

    Jaylon To’O made his Gold Coast rugby League first grade debut in Round Thirteen when he started at half for Runaway Bay against Bilambil and also started at half in Round Fifteen against Ormeau.

    Jaylon To’O moved to the wing for his second GCRL First Grade match in Round Sixteen against the Burleigh Bears where he was up against fellow Titan Will Evans.

    Jaylan To’O also spent some time in the GCRL U20 competition for Runaway Bay in 2019 including starting at left centre and scoring in Round Seventeen against Helensvale. Jaylon To’O had backed up a break down the left touchline line and was on hand to receive the ball inside to run thirty five metres to score untouched.

    Jaylon To’O was one of three Titans U18 try scorers as they overcame a determined New South Wales Country U18 side 14 – 12 in Cudgen in wet conditions in early October 2018. In the match Jaylan To’O also converted one of the Titans tries to account for six of the Titans fourteen points.

    Starting in the centres for the Titans U18 side Jaylan To’O had a solid match with his try coming in the second half from a powerful run out of dummy half. With the Titans attacking the line, Jaylan To’O moved into dummy half with the Titans on the attack about two metres from the New South Wales Country line, picking up the ball up and ran to his left barging over taking two NSW Country defenders with him.

    Jaylon To’O started the 2018 season as part of the Tweed Heads Seagulls MM Cup squad playing in all seven of Tweed Heads matches including their Week One Final against South’s Logan.

    Jaylan To’O started all seven matches from the interchange bench including Round Seven when he was named to start at hooker against Easts but reverted to the bench for the start of the match.

    Post the 2018 MM Cup competition, Jaylan To’O played for Runaway Bay in the Gold Coast Rugby League U19 competition playing a variety of positions including fullback and five eight.

    In the U19 competition in 2018 Jaylan To’O played in twelve matches finishing with a 50% strike rate. Jaylan To’O scored an early season double against Ormeau and scored a double later in the season against Currumbin. Jaylan To’O’s other 2018 U19 tries came in matches against Ormeau and Burleigh.

    In 2018 Jaylan To’O also played in four GCRL Doug Lipp Cup matches, making his debut in June against Tugun. In just his second Doug Lipp Cup match Jaylan To’O scored against Ormeau (he clearly enjoyed playing against Ormeau).

    For Runaway Bay in the 2017 U17 Division One competition Jaylan To’O scored a total of 74 points from six tries and twenty-five goals. Jaylan To’O scored a double in Round One against Ormeau and finished the season scoring in each of the last three rounds which were against Ormeau, Mudgeeraba and Helensvale.

    With the boot on four occasions did Jaylan To’O kick four goals in a match which were against Bilambil, Ormeau twice and Mudgeeraba. Jaylan To’O made his U19 debut in July against Mudgeeraba and went on to play five matches in total in the Gold Coast U19 competition.

    Jaylan To’O also played five matches in the U19 competition in 2017.

    For a centre, Jaylan To’O is a strong young man who does not rely just on his size and speed and using his natural running balance to either engage the opposing defenders and off load, run either an inside or outside shoulder route or an in and away to slow the forward momentum of the defender and accelerate on the outside.

    For a player of his size, Jaylan To’O also has a very good passing game especially to his right side. When the ball is passed out to the back line, Jaylan To’O is very good at straitening up the attack and pass to his outside supports if they have room to move further out wide.

    From a speed perspective Jaylan To’O has above average speed for both his size and position and when he breaks into open space, he will rarely be caught from behind other than from only the fastest of opponents and he is also very good at positioning his support players when he gets to the fullback. The only possible question about Jaylan To’O’s speed is whether it will stay at or near the above average category as he matures and inevitably fills out.

    Defensively Jaylan To’O uses his physical characteristics to good effect, he drives with his shoulder into his opponent and has very good timing in terms of when to come out of the line and certainly has the speed to readjust and chase if his timing is slightly off and his opposing centre gets on his outside.

    For me when I saw him play for either PBC or Burleigh Jaylan To’O was the defensive leader of the three quarter line and other defenders keyed off him in terms of whether to use an up and in methodology and slide to the outside.

    Jaylan To’O on an individual level has the body control to redirect quickly and mirror the movement of the opposing attackers and anticipate what vector the attack comes from and innately understands when to allow the attacking play to develop in from of him and when to come out of the line to disrupt the attacking play prior to its formation.

    His timing and anticipation in defence are one of the reasons that I think that he could also handle playing in the centres as he progresses to the upper echelons of junior rugby league and into senior football.

    Jaylan To’O will play the 2020 season with the Tweed Heads Seagulls in their U20 Hastings Deering’s Colts squad for the second season in a row and may also add to the number of Gold Coast Rugby League First Grade matches that he played for Runaway Bay in 2019.

    Over the last few seasons Jaylan To’O played a variety of positions including fullback, centre and five eight and even spent some time in the dummy half role but this season bar one game has featured primarily at fullback. Ultimately I think that potentially Jaylan To’O’s best position is at fullback although I am definitely not 100% certain of that as centre is still a more than viable option.

    His match for the Titans U18’s last in 2018 against New South Wales Country in the centres has also helped to firm up my belief that that centre is certainly a viable option for Jaylon To’O going forward. What I am certain of however is that regardless of position Jaylan To’O is a very good rugby league player with a bright future.

    Jaylon To’O has a similar playing style to former Bronco and Queensland Reds player Karmichael Hunt, as a strong fullback with all of the running and ball playing skills to play the game at a high level who is fearless both in terms of charging into the defensive line and defensively as well as using his skills to the benefit of his team’s ultimate success.

  13. #1153
    Kangaroo
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    Sep 2011
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    Tremain Spry. The former Ipswich State High School student spent the 2018 off-season training with the Titans NRL squad looking to secure a coveted NRL Development contract but went one better and signed a two year NRL contract with the Titans which will take him through to the end of the current 2020 season.

    Tremain Spry started from the interchange bench in the Titans first 2019 NRL trial this season against the North Queensland Cowboys on the Sunshine Coast. In the NRL trial Tremain Spry had a tough initiation but after that settled down putting in a solid performance in a match not conducive to outside backs due to the weather conditions. Tremain Spry played for the Burleigh Bears Queensland Cup side in their Queensland Cup trial the week prior against the Souths Logan Magpies.

    Tremain Spry also started from the bench for the Titans second and final NRL trial when they took on Brisbane on the Gold Coast where his outstanding potential was on display on a number of occasions.

    Tremain Spry was also part of the Queensland U20 squad starting the match against New South Wales that was the Third State of Origin curtain raiser on the wing.

    In the 2019 season proper Tremain Spry started the season with the Tweed Heads Seagulls Queensland Cup side, starting in the centres in Round One against the PNG Hunters at Tweed Heads.

    Playing left centre Tremain Spry played the entire 80 minutes taking nine runs for 92 metres, 36 post contact, had an off-load, broke four tackles and had a play the ball average of 3.91 seconds. Defensively Tremain Spry made nine tackles missing only one.

    Tremain Spry had a huge match in Round Two scoring a double, and just missing a third. His first try resulted when he took possession after Townsville fullback Zac Santo spilt a grubber under pressure from Keegan Hipgrave for Tremain Spry to dive over under the posts.

    Tremain Spry’s second try resulted when he ran into a gap five metres out in the second half and was presented with a good ball by Tweed Heads five eight Lindon McGrady. Late in the match Tremain Spry could have had his third when he took an intercept whilst defending on his own line but was dragged down five metres out after a ninety three metres run.

    Playing right centre Tremain Spry ran for a team leading 177 metres, twenty six post contact, and fifteen from dummy half, had a line break, broke three tackles, played the ball at an average of 4.04 seconds, had an offload and made six tackles.

    Due to injury Tremain Spry played only 31 minutes of Tweed Head’s Round Three Queensland Cup match against Burleigh. In his time on the field he ran for 31 metres, broke a tackle, had an offload and played the ball in an average time of 4.25 seconds. Tremain Spry also made three tackles at a 100% tackling efficiency whilst once again playing right centre.

    After playing only 21 minutes in Round Three and missing Round Four Tremain Spry was back in the Tweed Heads Seagulls Queensland Cup side for Round Five and scored the Seagulls only try in their 32-6 loss to Wynnum Manly.

    Playing on the right Tremain Spry played the entire 80 minutes running for 115 metres (13 post contact), made a line break, broke two tackles, played the ball at a team leading average speed of 3.01 seconds and made a tackle.

    Tremain Spry’s try was one of the easier ones that he will score, he ran into a huge gap around seventy metres out to score under the posts untouched.

    In Round Six of the Queensland Cup for Tweed Heads against the Mackay Cutters, Tremain Spry scored his fourth try of the season, when Tweed Heads spread the ball to the right, Tremain Spry got outside of his direct opponent and scored untouched from around twenty metres out.

    Playing the full game, Tremain Spry ran for 103 metres (twenty post contact), had a line break, line break assist, a try assist when he set up a try for Taylor Walters, broke a team leading six tackles, played the ball at an average speed of 3.97 seconds and had an 80% tackling efficiency in the match.

    In Round Seven against Redcliffe Tremain Spry started at right centre and played the entire 80 minutes. In that time he ran for 45 metres (twenty post contact), broke two tackles, played the ball at an average speed of 2.82 seconds and made thirteen tackles at a tackling efficiency of 81.3%.

    In Round Eight of the Queensland Cup Tremain Spry played right centre and scored his fourth try of the season for Tweed Heads against the Ipswich Jets and as usual played the entire 80 minutes. In that time he ran for 84 metres (25 post contact), broke two tackles, had a line break assist, played the ball at an average of 3.05 seconds and made three tackles.

    In Round Nine of the Queensland Cup, Tremain Spry started at right centre once again playing the entire 80 minutes against Norths. He ran for 121 metres (43 post contact), broke two tackles, played the ball at an average speed of 3.35 seconds and made thirteen tackles.

    Round Ten saw Tremain Spry score a double against the Easts Tigers from right centre. In his 80 minutes on the field, Tremain Spry ran for 142 metres (21 post contact), broke four tackles, played the ball at an average speed of 4.18 seconds and made five tackles at a 100% tackling efficiency.

    Tremain Spry’s first try of the match was a seventy metre effort in the first half. He received the ball early, slicing through the Tigers left side defence before easily rounding the fullback to score under the posts and for his second try Tremain Spry was on the spot to clean up a dropped kick to score untouched in the right corner in the second half.

    In Round Eleven Tremain Spry started at right centre once again playing the entire 80 minutes against the Northern Pride. He ran for 55 metres (15 post contact), broke two tackles, played the ball at an average speed of 3.24 seconds and made ten tackles.

    In Round Twelve against Souths Logan from the right centre position Tremain Spry in his 80 minutes on the field ran for 92 metres (37 post contact), had a line break assist, broke three tackles, played the ball at an average speed of 3.6 seconds and made six tackles a 75% tackling efficiency.

    In a tough Round Thirteen loss against the Sunshine Coast Falcons, Tremain Spry playing right centre in his 80 minutes, ran for 78 metres (nineteen post contact), broke a tackle, played the ball at an average speed of 3.66 seconds and made eight tackles.

    Tremain Spry moved to five eight for Tweed’s Round Fourteen match against the PNG Hunters in Port Moresby scoring his eighth try of the 2019 season. Tremain Spry played the entire 80 minutes, running for 89 metres (eighteen post contact), broke two tackles, played the ball at an average of 4.37 seconds and made eight tackles at an 80% tackling efficiency.

    Tremain’s try was an impressive one, he received the ball on the right side of the field, dummied to the immediate Hunters to get through the initial line before popping a great short ball to Kalani Going who charged thirty metres down field before passing back inside to Tremain Spry to score.

    Tremain Spry moved back to right centre for Round Fifteen against Ipswich, once again playing the entire 80 minutes. In that time he ran for 97 metres (twenty post contact), broke two tackles, played the ball at an average speed of 3.35 seconds and made seven tackles.

    After missing Round Sixteen as a result of the U20 State of Origin match, Tremain Spry was back starting at right centre in Round Seventeen against Burleigh, once again playing all eighty minutes. In that time, Tremain Spry ran for 39 metres (six post contact), broke two tackles, played the ball at an average speed for 4.57 seconds and made eight tackles at an 80% tackling efficiency.

    Tremain Spry started at right centre again in Round Eighteen against the Central Queensland Capra’s playing the entire eight minutes. Tremain Spry ran for 126 metres (38 post contact), had a line break, broke four tackles, played the ball at an average speed of 3.68 seconds and made three tackles.

    Tremain Spry as usual started at right centre in Round Nineteen against the Mackay Cutters again playing all 80 minutes. In that time he ran for 95 metres (41 post contact), broke a tackle, played the ball at an average speed for 3.42 seconds and had a 100% tackling efficiency whilst making his eleven tackles.

    Tremain Spry also started at right centre in Round Twenty against the Ipswich Jets once again playing all 80 minutes. In the match, Tremain Spry ran for 59 metres (22 post contact), broke three tackles, played the ball at an average speed for 3.56 seconds and made six tackles at a 75% tackling efficiency.

    After missing Round twenty One, Tremain Spry was back at right centre for Round Twenty two against Souths Logan playing the entire match. Tremain Spry ran for 79 metres (fourteen post contact), broke three tackles, played the ball at an average speed of 3.56 seconds and made fourteen tackles.

    Tremain Spry scored his 8th try of the season in Round Twenty Three against the Northern Pride from right centre when he jumped up between two Pride defenders to retrieve the ball and score a relatively easy try.

    In addition to his try, Tremain Spry played all 80 minutes, running for 124 metres (36 post contact), broke three tackles, made a line break, played the ball at an average speed of 3.74 seconds and made fourteen tackles.

    In total in the Queensland Cup in 2019, Tremain Spry played twenty matches, nineteen of which he played all eighty minutes, Tremain Spry came off injury in the 31st minute of the other match meaning that he was on the field for a total of 1 551 minutes out of a possible 1 600 meaning that Tremain Spry was on the field 97% of the possible time that he could have been on there for.

    In those minutes, Tremain Spry scored nine tries, had two try assists, broke fifty two tackles, made six line breaks, made 154 tackles at a tackling efficiency of 73.1% and ran for 1 854 metres.

    Tremain Spry’s 2019 Queensland Cup per game averages included playing 77.6 minutes, running for 92.7 metres, making 7.7 tackles and breaking 2.6 tackles. Thus per eighty minutes, Tremain Spry in 2019, ran for 95.57 metres and made 7.94 tackles.

    In 2018 Tremain Spry played for the Sydney Roosters in the U20 Jersey Flegg competition, across the season playing in fourteen matches for the Roosters.

    Tremain Spry started Round One against the Sharks at fullback and Round Two against the Mounties on the wing before missing a number of rounds with injury coming back for Round Seven on the wing against Manly. Tremain Spry stayed on the wing until Round Thirteen when he moved into the centres against Penrith and stayed there for the remainder of the 2018 season.

    Prior to his move to the centres, Tremain Spry scored a single try which came in Round Eight against the Mounties, but post his move to the centres Tremain Spry scored seven tries from eight matches.

    Tremain Spry scored doubles in Round Fourteen against the Newcastle Knights and in Rounds Twenty-Three against the Wests Tigers and also scored in Rounds Thirteen, Seventeen and Eighteen against Penrith, North Sydney and Manly respectively.

    In Round Twenty in a match against the North Sydney Bears, Tremain Spry was up against former Titans NRL player Jesse Arthurs, Jesse Arthurs was one of the Bears try scorers that afternoon.

    In 2017 Tremain Spry started on the wing for the Queensland U18 side in their match against traditional rivals New South Wales. On the opposite wing that night for Queensland was fellow Titans NRL hopeful Kea Pere.

    Also in 2017 Tremain Spry was a standout for Ipswich State High School especially in the Langer Cup including scoring a memorable try against Wavell State High School. Leevai Sutton who was part of the Titans U18 side in their late 2018 matches against PNG and New South Wales Country was Ipswich State High School’s fullback that season with Tremain Spry playing in the centres.

    2017 also saw Tremain Spry play for the Ipswich Jets in the MM Cup competition where he primarily played at fullback in the Jets six matches.

    Tremain Spry has very good speed off the mark, which I would consider above average for a centre and can break to the outside quickly, couple that with long arms, which he uses to great effect with a powerful fend makes him difficult to tackle.
    When opposing centres are able to get hold of him, Tremain Spry usually is able to maintain his balance and keeps an arm free, looking to offload to either his inside or outside support.

    Tremain Spry has more tools though than just an in and away, he will also use his size and strength to run straight over smaller opposing centres as well as also having the skill to step back inside of the defender if he is pushing to the outside too early.
    Tremain Spry also has a powerful fend which served him well in the NYC competition and in fact has been the reason for at least two of his line breaks this season when his opposing centre has gone high and he has just palmed him off with seemingly little effort. His natural strength is just an impressive attribute.

    A real positive for me is that Tremain Spry can also run a good inside shoulder line due to the fact that he maintains his spacing in the back line and will quickly identify where his direct opponent is ling up to determine whether it is appropriate to run an inside or outside shoulder line or a “crash” line for that matter, he certainly has the courage to run that line regularly which not everybody has.

    As you would expect, due to his size and strength, Tremain Spry is a very good defender regardless of position. He will not necessarily hit hard but is definitely aggressive and he is very good at mirroring the movement of the opposing centre and wrapping him up ball and all. He is also quick enough to recover and chase if the opposing centre gets on the outside and his long reach is also a positive attribute in those situations.

    From a team defensive methodology stand point, Tremain Spry seems to be very comfortable in a sliding defensive scheme where he can use his speed and body control to their best advantage in though he can be an intimidating presence when he chooses to come out of the line to interrupt the attacking movement immediately prior to its development.

    As noted above Tremain Spry trained the last offseason with the Titans NRL squad and after starting from the bench in the Titans two NRL trials against North Queensland and Brisbane signed a two year deal with the Titans which will see him play a lot of NRL come the 2020 season under new coach Justin Holbrook.

    With solid form in the 2020 NRL trials and pre-season training, Tremain Spry will be right in the firing line to make his NRL debut for the Titans in Round One of next year’s Premiership competition away to the Canberra Raiders.

    Tremain Spry spent time at fullback, on the wing and in the centres in the Sydney Roosters U20 Jersey Flegg side in 2018 but it is hard to go past how effective that he was when he moved to the centres for both the Roosters in late 2018 and Tweed Heads in 2019 especially from an attacking perspective.

    2019 should have dispelled any thought of Tremain Spry being moved, as good centres are such a precious commodity in the NRL in the modern age.

    From an NRL player comparison perspective, Tremain Spry has eerily similar traits to Sydney Roosters, New South Wales State of Origin and Australian International star centre Latrell Mitchell. Like Mitchell, Tremain Spry is a big strong powerful centre who will not be beaten in a one on one contest in attack or defence.

    They may play on opposite sides of the field but both Latrell Mitchell and Tremain Spry can grab a game by the scruff of the neck and throttle it when they are in the mood to do so.

    Tremain Spry is just a powerful young man who is only now learning how to translate and direct that natural strength and power consistently on a rugby league field. Tremain Spry made huge strides to realising his potential in 2019 and there is plenty more to come and all things remaining equal he will have a long and prosperous career in Titans colours starting in 2020.

  14. #1154
    Kangaroo
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    Brodyn Gudgeon. The talented young Titans linked half started the 2019 season as part of the Burleigh MM Cup squad as his rugby league career continues to develop.

    Brodyn Gudgeon missed Round One of the 2019 MM Cup but was named on an extended bench for Round Two against the Townsville Blackhawks, started Round Three at five eight against Tweed Heads and starred after starting the match at five eight, scoring a double and also having a try assist.

    Brodyn Gudgeon operated on the left of the field and for his first try, he took the ball whilst he was stationary around nine metres out from the Seagulls line and just exploded off the mark to slice through the defensive line.

    For his second try Brodyn Gudgeon looked like he was going to take the defence on just like his first try but instead stepped off his left foot and accelerating to score mid-way between the right goal post and the touch line.

    Brodyn Gudgeon’s try assist was as a result of an outstanding short attacking kick, he went all of the way to the line putting in a deft right foot kick angled towards the in goal area and sat up perfectly for left winger Trey Peni to retrieve and score.

    In total in the 2019 MM Cup competition Brodyn Gudgeon started in four of six of Burleigh’s matches at five eight missing only Round One.

    Brodyn Gudgeon started at half for Helensvale in their U18 Division One Round One match against Southport.

    Over the course of the 2019 GCRL U18 Division One regular season Brodyn Gudgeon played in eight matches scoring two tries, being in Round Eight against Bilambil and in Round Nine against the Ormeau Shearers.

    Brodyn Gudgeon started at half in Week One of the Finals as Helensvale defeated Currumbin 24 – 20 and also started at half back and scored for Helensvale in their U18 Division One Week two Finals loss to Ormeau 34 – 26.

    Brodyn Gudgeon made his Hastings Deering’s Colts debut when he started at five eight for Burleigh in Round Twelve against the Sunshine Coast Falcons with the Bears winning the match 23 – 22.

    Brodyn Gudgeon also started at five eight in Round Thirteen against the Sunshine Coast Falcons, crossing for his first try in the 36th minute of the match. Brodyn Gudgeon shaped to kick on the half way mark but instead sent his left winger down the touchline when a great cut out pass and then backed up on the inside to get the ball back to score untouched.

    2019 also saw Brodyn Gudgeon start at five eight for the Titans U18 side in their match against North Queensland that was played as the curtain raiser to the Titans/ Warriors NRL match in June.

    Late in 2018 Brodyn Gudgeon started from the bench for the Titans U16 side and scored a second half try as the Titans went down 30 – 10 to the New South Wales Country U16’s at Cudgen on a wet and windy Saturday afternoon in early October.

    The try was a result of Brodyn Gudgeon not giving up chasing a short grubber kick from half Ryan Rivett (I believe) and beating the NSW Country defence to the ball in the in goal area.

    Brodyn Gudgeon played the 2018 GCRL season in the U16 Division One competition with Helensvale and through his eleven games had a 100% strike rate. Brodyn Gudgeon scored a late season hat trick against Southport and also scored a double against Southport the week prior. Brodyn Gudgeon’s other 2018 double came against Burleigh.

    Brodyn Gudgeon also scored against Southport, Currumbin and Burleigh in the first regular season match and also the last to bookend his season.

    At the start of the2018 season Brodyn Gudgeon started at half back for the U16 Gold Coast Vikings Yellow side in the South East Queensland U16 Challenge and from there was selected in the South East Queensland Green U16 for the Queensland Age Championships.

    In those Championships, Brodyn Gudgeon started at half back in all four matches including the Championship Final against South East Queensland White and in fact scored in that final.

    Over the course of the 2017 season the Coombabah State High School student scored eight tries from fourteen matches and started at half back in the 34 – 10 Grand Final loss to Nerang. Brodyn Gudgeon scored an early season hat trick against Coomera and also doubles against Nerang and Southport as well as a try against Burleigh to account for his eight tries over the course of the 2017 rugby league season.

    In attack, Brodyn Gudgeon is a young half who is a dynamic runner of the football who excels in taking on the defensive line with deft footwork around the ruck, looking to seek out bigger slower forwards when they are caught on the edge of the ruck, he also has a very good dummy which continues to be effective regardless of the frequency of its use as it is indistinguishable in process from when he is going to actually pass the ball.

    Brodyn Gudgeon does not however have blinkers on, and when his backline is set deep, he can see an overlap or a another play developing he will get the ball out quickly and effectively, using his solid passing skills from both sides of his body, where he will put the football out in front of his runners. Brodyn Gudgeon is able to impart a good spin on the ball, thus can get good distance on his passes whilst maintaining accuracy from both sides of his body all be it he seems to gets better distance when passing to the left hand side of the field.

    Assisting his play is the fact that Brodyn Gudgeon seems to make the decision what to do with the ball quickly thus enabling the ball to get out wide quickly. One aspect that is notable when you see him play is how he directs the team around the field, he is in charge of when and where the forwards run and also when he wants the ball to spread it out wide to his backline.

    Defensively Brodyn Gudgeon has decent size for a half back, a facet which assists in him being a very effective defender for his position, in fact he is an asset to his team’s defensive pattern to the extent that he has the strength and technique to more than hold his own one on one against wide running forwards.

    Brodyn Gudgeon is MM Cup eligible again in 2020 and has been selected in the Burleigh MM Cup squad for the second season in a row and post that competition will line up for Helensvale in the GCRL U18 Division One competition.

    I would also anticipate that Brodyn Gudgeon will, post the 2020 MM Cup, add to his two 2019 Hastings Deering’s Colts matches next season.

    Brodyn Gudgeon has played in the halves for most if not all of his junior rugby league career and there is no reason to suggestion that that situation is not the most beneficial for Brodyn Gudgeon to realise his immense potential.

    My NRL player comparison for Brodyn Gudgeon is Cronulla Sharks and former New Zealand Warrior and New Zealand International Shaun Johnson. Shaun Johnson has a wicked side step and acceleration and those are two attributes that Brodyn Gudgeon also possesses.

    No one can predict the future but how Brodyn Gudgeon’s game develops over the coming years will be something that I will be keeping a very close eye on especially in relation to his ball playing and game management skills

  15. #1155
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    Tannah Boyd. The outstanding prospect is a Gold Coast junior who is signed to the Titans NRL squad until the end of the 2021 season and moved immediately to the Burleigh Bears Queensland Cup squad.

    To cap off an outstanding 2019 season Tannah Boyd, in late December was named in the 2020 Queensland U20 Emerging Origin Squad.

    Tannah Boyd made his NRL for the Titans off the bench in Round Twenty Four against the Newcastle Knights coming on to play thirty minutes in the hooking role, kicking for forty four metres and making twenty one tackles at a quite impressive tackling efficiency of 91.3%, including one try saving tackle when he desperately held on to a Newcastle players jersey with his left arm preventing him from scoring from close range.

    Tannah Boyd made his first NRL start in Twenty Five against St George which was his “home” debut as well for the Titans and the Titans last match of the season.

    In his 80 minutes on the field, Tannah Boyd ran for 58 metres (ten post contact), broke two tackles, played the ball at an average speed of 3.6 seconds, made twenty five tackles at a tackling efficiency of 92.6%, Tannah Boyd also kicked the ball eleven times making 291 metres on those occasions.

    In total in his two NRL matches for the Titans in 2019, Tannah Boyd played 110 of a possible 160 minutes (68.75%), running for fifty eight metres, making forty six tackles at a very good tackling efficiency of 87.3% and kicked for 337 metres.

    Tannah Boyd’s 2019 NRL per game averages included playing fifty five minutes, running for twenty nine metres, making twenty three tackles and kicking for 168.5 metres. Not a bad effort at all for an 18 year old in his first two career NRL matches. Thus per eighty minutes, Tannah Boyd, in 2019, ran for 42.18 metres and made 33.45 tackles.

    Tannah Boyd was also selected in the Queensland U20 squad starting the match against New South Wales that was the Third State of Origin curtain raiser from the inter change bench. When he came on Tannah Boyd added enthusiasm and intensity just when he was needed and spent the majority of his time on the field in the dummy half role.

    Tannah Boyd’s first match after signing with the Titans was for Burleigh in the Gold Coast Rugby League First Grade competition when he came off the bench in Round Thirteen against Ormeau.

    Tannah Boyd’s first appearance for Burleigh was in Round Fifteen of the Queensland Cup when he played seventeen minutes off the bench against the Ipswich Jets. In that time, Tannah Boyd ran for 41 metres (four post contact), broke two tackles, played the ball at an average speed of 4.22 seconds and had a 100% tackling efficiency.

    After being named earlier in the week as the Titans 18th man Tannah Boyd started at five eight for Burleigh in Round Eighteen of the Queensland Cup against the Townsville Blackhawks playing all 80 minutes and recording his first Queensland Cup try for the Bears.

    In addition Tannah Boyd ran for a team leading 164 metres (22 post contact), broke three tackles, played the ball at an average speed for 3.12 seconds and made fourteen tackles at a 100% tackling efficiency.

    In relation to his try, Tannah Boyd spun the ball out the left, and the Burleigh left centre split the defence before passing back inside to Tannah Boyd who sprinted forty metres to score untouched.

    After missing a couple of weeks with injury Tannah Boyd started from the bench for Burleigh in Round Twenty One against the Northern Pride, playing at five eight in his 213 minutes on the field. In that time he ran for 10 metres and made ten tackles at an 83.33% tackling efficiency.

    Tannah Boyd retained his place on the bench for Burleigh in Round Twenty Two against the Sunshine Coast Falcons playing twenty minutes after coming on playing in the halves.

    In the match Tannah Boyd ran for twenty metres (four post contact), played the ball at an average speed of 4.2 seconds and had a 100% tackling efficiency.

    In total in the 2019 Queensland Cup competition when you combine his Souths Logan and Burleigh matches, Tannah Boyd played twelve games, ran for 645 metres, made 134 tackles at a tackling efficiency of 82%, had five try assists, four line break assists, three offloads and kicked for 2 203 metres.

    Tannah Boyd’s 2019 Queensland Cup per game averages included playing sixty five minutes per match, running for 53.8 metres on five runs and making 11.5 tackles. Thus per eighty minutes, Tannah Boyd, in 2019 in the Queensland Cup, ran for 66.22 metres and made 14.15 tackles.

    This season Tannah Boyd prior to signing with the Titans played in eight Queensland Cup matches for the Souths Logan Magpies to go along with his two Queensland Cup matches in 2018.

    Tannah Boyd started at half for Souths Logan in Round One of the Queensland Cup of the 2019 season against Central Queensland playing the entire 80 minutes. In the match he ran for 64 metre (11 post contact), kicked for 210 metres, kicked a conversion, forced a drop out, had a try assist and made six tackles.

    Round Two against the Mackay Cutters saw Tannah Boyd play the entire 80 minutes at half, running for 72 metres (16 pot contact),kicked for 256 metres, kicked three conversions, forced a drop out, had a try assist, broke two tackles and made thirteen tackles.

    In Round Three against Norths Tannah Boyd played the entire match at half, running for 45 metres, kicking two conversions, kicking for 315 metres, forcing a drop out and making thirteen tackles.

    In Round Six against the Northern Pride Tannah Boyd played the entire match at half, running for twenty seven metres, kicking for 291 metres, forcing two drop outs and making eighteen tackles.

    In Round Seven against the Easts Tigers Tannah Boyd played the entire match at half, running for 100 metres (twenty post contact),had a try assist, broke a tackle, kicked for 193 metres, and making thirteen tackles.

    Round Eight against Wynnum Manly saw Tannah Boyd once again play the entire match at half, running for forty metres, record two try assists, break a tackle, kick for 209 metres, and make Seventeen tackles.

    In Round Nine against the Sunshine Coast Falcons Tannah Boyd played 59 minutes at half, running for twenty four metres and make ten tackles.

    In Round Thirteen against Townsville Tannah Boyd played the entire match at half, running for thirty metres, kick for 316 metres and make sixteen tackles at a 100% tackling efficiency.

    In total in his eight Queensland Cup matches for Souths Logan this season, Tannah Boyd played 619 minutes, run for 406 metres, kick for 2 065 metres, kick nine conversions, record five try assists, broke five tackles, offloaded the ball twice and made 106 tackles.

    In 2018 Tannah Boyd made his Queensland Cup debut in Round Seventeen against the Central Queensland Capra’s celebrating by scoring. Tannah Boyd had to get a special dispensation to play in the match as he had not yet turned 18 years old.

    The table below compares Tannah Boyd’s 2018 and 2019 per game averages:

    2018 Q Cup 2019 Q Cup (BB & SL) NRL

    Games played 2 12 2

    Minutes per game 80 64 55

    Kick metres per game 111 183.6 168.5

    Metres per game 87.5 53.6 29

    Tackles per game 18 11.4 23

    Tannah Boyd has also played three Hastings Deering’s Colts matches for the South Logan Magpies in 2019 before signing with the Titans, playing his first in Round Ten against Ipswich, where he kicked five conversions. Tannah Boyd also kicked five conversions against the Western Mustangs in Round Eleven and scored a ty and kicked a conversion in Round Twelve against Tweed Heads to finish his three 2019 Hastings Deering’s Colts matches with twenty six points.

    In the 2019 Hastings Deering’s Colts Player of the Year Award tally Tannah Boyd finished with five votes.

    Tannah Boyd started off the 2018 season with the Souths Logan Magpies in the MM Cup competition, coming into the side in Round Six against Central Queensland starting at half. In fact Tannah Boyd started at half in all five of his 2018 MM Cup matches, including their Grand Final win over Norths and their National U18 final loss to Penrith.

    Across those five matches, Tannah Boyd scored 42 points from four tries and thirteen goals. He scored doubles against the Western Mustangs in Round Seven and Tweed Heads in the first week of the 2018 MM Cup finals to account for his four tries. His best game was against Tweed Heads in the final when he also six goals to go with his two tries. Tannah Boyd also kicked four goals in the U18 National Final against Penrith.

    Tannah Boyd also played in eight U20 Hastings Deering’s Colts matches in 2018 including their Week One final against the Northern Pride, coming into the side in Round Twelve against the Victorian Thunderbolts at half back.

    Tannah Boyd started at half in all eight of his matches scoring 42 points from three tries and fifteen goals. Tannah Boyd had a huge match in Round Twenty Four against Ipswich when he scored two tries and kicked five goals. Tannah Boyd’s other 2018 Colts try came in Round Twenty against the Western Mustangs and in Round Twenty Three he kicked six conversions against the Easts Tigers.

    The former Australian School boy International grew up on the Gold Coast attending Keebra Park State High School and playing for Runaway Bay last playing for the Seagulls in 2016 in the U16 Division One competition.

    Tannah Boyd is one of the few players that represented Queensland twice at the U18 level, starting at half in both 2017 and 2018, kicking one from two in 2018.

    Tannah Boyd with his speed is able to exploit even small gaps in the defensive line with an exceptional step off either foot and impressive acceleration as well as outstanding body control. It is that speed trait which opens up his incredible ball playing skills as well.

    Teams start to focus heavily on Tannah Boyd when he has the ball with outside defenders looking to come in to assist that they open up holes wider out in the defensive line that Tannah Boyd can exploit.

    Tannah Boyd has exquisite timing on his passes and is able to weight them perfectly as well and can do so from either side of his body. Adding in this is that Tannah Boyd can stop on a dime even travelling at full speed and pop the short pass, thus it looks for all money that he is going to run the ball thus the defence converges and then the ball is delivered to a support runner who is through a hole before the defensive line can react and readjust.

    In saying all of that the most impressive part of Tannah Boyd’s passing game is that he will go right to the line committing defenders, he is absolutely fearless in that regard.

    Tannah Boyd also runs with the ball in both hands which is another reason why the defensive line is unable to determine exactly what Tannah Boyd is going to do.

    Like when he has the ball in his hands, there is nothing that Tannah Boyd cannot do in relation to kicking the ball. Tannah Boyd is an exceptional tactical kicker with range and accuracy, he can put up pin point bombs and perfectly weighted grubber kicks into the in goal. In short if you can name a type of rugby league kick, Tannah Boyd can execute it with precision.

    Defensively Tannah Boyd is a very strong young man with exceptional functional strength to go along with an innate understanding of the attacking strategies of rugby league thus he is able to anticipate what an attacking side is looking to do with the ball and then be in the best position to negate it.

    Tannah Boyd has a very good low tackling technique which is simple and repeatable and effective against all size opponents and thus there is no need for a defensive minder on Tannah Boyd’s side of the field. In short just like his attacking play Tannah Boyd is an outstanding defender.

    His twenty one tackles in his NRL debut away to the Newcastle Knights is testament to that fact.

    Another area where Tannah Boyd has a plus attribute is in relation to his leaderships skills. He is a strong confident personality and that translates to a leader on and off the field and you can see that the other players gravitate towards him.

    This is a trait that you cannot teach, you either have it or you don’t. Even if he is not the nominated captain on the field Tannah Boyd is a leader regardless of which team he is lining up for and acts accordingly both on and off the field.

    Tannah Boyd will spend the 2020 off season training with the Titans NRL and he must be at very short odds to add to his two NRL games in 2019 come the 2020 season even though he will still be Colts eligible. If Tannah Boyd does not make the Titans game day 17 in any particular round of the 2020 NRL premiership season, he will almost certainly be part of the Burleigh Queensland Cup squad for that round.

    With what Tannah Boyd showed defensively in his limited time in the NRL in 2019 and his attacking pedigree Tannah Boyd must be at short odds to be in the frame to start in the halves for the Titans come Round One of the 2020 NRL premiership season when the Titans travel to Canberra. If not in the starting line-up, Tannah Boyd, with his ability to fill in at dummy half and fullback Tannah Boyd would be a great interchange option for Justin Holbrook.

    Tannah Boyd grew up playing half back including for Keebra Park, Australian School Boys and in the Queensland Cup although I note that he did play a couple of matches in the Queensland Cup at fullback for Souths Logan in 2018 and when he came off the bench for the Queensland U20 side in 2019 actually played very well in the dummy half role.

    With his ability to play right at the defensive line, getting the ball in his hands as much as possible is critical therefore for me Tannah Boyd is a natural half and a potential representative level one at that.

    I cannot get away from thinking of former Sydney Roosters and former Queensland State of Origin and Australian International Cooper Cronk every time that I see Tannah Boyd play. Like Cronk, Tannah Boyd is just a class apart in every aspect and is just a natural rugby league player as well as an outstanding on field play maker and leader as was evidenced when he played for the 2019 Queensland U20 State of Origin side displaying leadership and determination after coming off the bench


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