It feels like the injuries just don’t stop and there are some more weird and wacky goodness going on in this week’s rotations.
Thanks as always go to the legend that is Matt Hawker and his website, www.nrlsupercoachstats.com. I borrow the screenshots from his Minutes section, which for this season you can find under the ‘2020’ tab (just under ‘Stats Table’ which is obviously the most used tab for myself). Make sure you consider donating to help him with the running costs, etc. as we SuperCoaches hammer his servers every week.
A few injury concerns this week, with the biggest one being Angus Crichton (59) going down with a knee issue. This saw extra minutes for Collins (41), while Aubusson (32) who was playing at lock, moved to the right edge once Angus went off.
BMoz (72) also went off for some treatment, although he return to play out the game. This gave some extra minutes to Tupouniua (28) although it’s also possible that the rotations were thrown off with the free interchanges (due to foul play) for BMoz leaving and returning to the field.
Due to the injuries, we saw big minutes for JWH (60) and Taukeiaho (65) again, with support from Liu (43) as well.
Cordner played 80 minutes on the left edge while Friend (67) and Lam (13) shared minutes at hooker again.
The Raiders lost Oldfield (41) to a hamstring injury, this saw debutant Valemei (39) come on to the right wing with Rapana (80) shifting to right centre.
The Raiders also had Papalii (60) leave the field in the first five minutes for a HIA, which he passed. Tapine (53) came off the bench earlier than expected as a result, although his minutes still finished close to expected when he plays in the middle. Lui (47) saw decent minutes but as expected they weren’t close to last week’s tally, while Sutton (39) and O’Donnell (26) also played minutes in the middle.
Havili (48) started at hooker but when Starling (47) came on, Havili stayed on at lock which impacted the middle forward minutes there.
Whitehead and Young both played 80 minutes on their respective edges.
No major injuries for the Storm and I believe there were a few early showers for Papenhuyzen (72) and Olam (67); but Finucane playing just 34 minutes is still weird despite the scoreline.
Seve (13) came on at left centre for Olam, and I believe the last eight minutes saw Munster (80) play fullback, with CS9 (80) moving to the halves and BSmith (53) playing hooker.
Welch (52) saw big minutes again but it’s hard to imagine that Finucane will only play 34 minutes every week, and while Welch may still get good minutes it would be unlikely to be 50+. NAS (40) had a monster game off the bench, while Tino (41) and Vete (28) also provided support off the bench.
Kaufusi and KBrom played 80 minutes on their respective edges as usual.
The only injury concern for the Titans was Fogarty (71) who left the field late in the game with a knee issue. Peachey (54) was already on the field so he moved to the halves with Jolliffe (35) getting extra minutes when Fogarty went off.
Arrow (58) saw his biggest minutes since Round 6 (of course), with him even getting more game time than Fotuaika (56) for the first time in four weeks. The rest of the middle forward minutes were spread between Lisone (24), Wallace (22) and Peachey as mentioned above.
Fermor and Hipgrave both played 80 minutes on their respective edges, while Clark (46) and Boyd (34) shared minutes at hooker.
No major injuries or HIA issues for the Tigers, and we saw Russell Packer (52) play his second game for the year and get big minutes straight away.
Aloiai (53) and Eisenhuth (61) also saw the bigger middle forward minutes, with McIntyre (32), Mikaele (29) and McQueen (13) sharing the remaining minutes.
Grant (64) came off early and didn’t go back on, with Billy Walters (80) moving to hooker and Brooks (16) moving to five eighth for the last part of the game.
Lucy and Garner both played the full 80 minutes on their respective edges, and both scored a brace of tries each as they towelled up the Broncos.
The Broncos lost Corey Oates (64) late in the game but thankfully the injury came back less serious than initially thought. Pangai (62) played the last 16 minutes of the game on the edge for Oates, with the rest of his game being in the middle. Weirdly Oates played on the right edge with Teo (30) starting on the left edge, before being subbed and he didn’t come back on.
Haas played the full 80 minutes this week, with Carrigan (74) getting a short rest. Flegler (35), Ofahengaue (28), Hopoate (27) shared the remaining middle forward and edge minutes.
Luke (49) and Paix (31) shared the minutes at hooker.
No injury concerns for the Dragons although Cam McInnes is curiously listed as having played 79 minutes although he doesn’t go off in this game – I’m assuming this one’s just an administrative mistake! Frizell and Hunt also played 80 minutes in their respective positions.
The other middle forward minutes were shared between Vaughan (46), Lawrie (34), Kerr (34), Merrin (24) and Ford (22).
TSims (64) shared minutes on an edge with Fuimaono (17).
The Bulldogs saw Kieran Foran (38) go down early due to a toe injury, but then after some initial treatment he played on. He was later taken out due to an act of foul play, which gave the Bulldogs a free interchange, but he never returned to the field. This meant JMK (77) spent the last 42 minutes playing in the halves, after the first 35 minutes were at hooker. The other Sione Katoa (45) played hooker for the remainder of the game.
Luke Thompson (64) saw big minutes at lock again, and he may still be building his fitness for bigger minutes come end of season. Tolman (53), Napa (59), To’omaga (31), Ogden (18) and Sue (15) shared the rest of the middle forward minutes.
RFM and Jackson played 80 minutes each on their respective edges.
The Rabbitohs lost Ethan Lowe (61) to a neck concern possibly arising from a crusher tackle. Sironen (31) finished the game on the edge. James Roberts stayed on the whole game but he injured his pec earlier and is basically missing the rest of the season now.
Murray (65), Tatola (49), Turgess (42) shared the bulk of the middle forward minutes, with support from Sele (42), Mago (15) and Nicholls (15).
Cook and Su’A played 80 minutes in their respective positions as usual.
No injuries for the Knights aside from Saulo (28) going for a HIA, which he passed.
It was the first game featuring Watson (43) on the interchange since Round 3, which already impacted the middle forward minutes. Klemmer (54), JSaif (39), Ese’ese (38) shared the bulk of the minutes with Watson playing as a running lock forward.
Guerra (57) started on the right edge but then Barnett (48) who had been playing in the middle too in his return from injury (first game since Round 2) shifted to the right edge, until he was replaced at the end by Mata’utia (13).
Lachy Fitz and McCullough played 80 minutes in their respective spots.
No major injuries this week but lots of HIA dramas.
Firstly Paseka (43) went off early for one, which brought Gosiewski (47) on early. He passed and returned to the field after 13 minutes. Then Suli (59) left the field after 44 minutes with what appeared to be a sternum injury, but he then returned to the field for Garrick (66) when he had to leave the field for a HIA. Croker (40) also went off for a HIA, before coming back on for Cust (76) at the end after he passed his HIA.
It’s honestly hard to take much away from this game given all the changes, but Gosiewski played in the backline while Suli and Garrick were off the field.
Taupau (49), Waddell (34) and Keppie (22) shared the prop minutes, while JTurbo, Joel Thompson and Siro all played the full 80 minutes in the backrow.
No injuries for the Eels aside from a bad cork to Nathan Brown (37) which meant he didn’t come back out in the second half.
We also saw a changed rotation without Matto playing 80 minutes on an edge. Takairangi (66) played 52 minutes before coming off for Davey (28), and then going back on for Lane (69) for the final 15 minutes. Lane also came back on with four minutes to go for Niukore (37).
This meant big minutes again for Paulo (61) with Gower (11) and Utoikamanu (11) not getting much game time.
Mahoney played 80 minutes at hooker as usual.
Patrick Herbert (39) went off just before halftime for a HIA, which he failed. This saw Lawton (80) move from the edge to right centre for the remainder of the game. Papali’i (41) came onto the edge to replace Lawton.
Tohu played 79 minutes on an edge, although he started on the left edge and then swapped to the other once Katoa (62) came onto the field. It was weird but Tohu came off in the 79th minute. Katoa had come on for Egan (70) who went off for a HIA, which he passed. So Lawton was playing hooker while Egan was off, and Katoa left edge, Tohu right edge.
Hetherington (58) was at lock, and he later had to go off for a HIA as well, which he passed too. All these HIAs saw the middle forward rotations muddled up, with Yung Maynie (40), Tevaga (47), Blair (26) and Paasi (18) sharing the minutes.
Green (70) was sinbinned.
The Sharks lost Sorensen (19) early on which saw Rudolf (61) come on and play out the game. Otherwise they had a pretty cruisy game for the most part, with Graham (63) having an early shower and also having the luxury of not playing Brailey (53) that much, with Tracey (27) getting a decent stint at hooker off the bench.
Talakai (52) played middle and then the edge after Graham went off. Woods (52), Uele (45) and Hunt (27) shared the remaining middle forward minutes, with Nikora playing 80 minutes on the right edge.
The Panthers lost Whare (5) early on to groin injury, this saw Billy “Chilly Willy” Burns (75) play right centre for the game.
The other injury was for Edwards (60) who went off with a ‘precautionary’ hamstring issue. This saw Crichton (80) move to fullback for the last 20 minutes, and I think it was Tyrone May (33) who moved to left centre (Panthers fans, please correct me if this is wrong).
We saw a weird rotation this week with Yeo (56) going off after just 30 minutes, and then coming back on with just over 25 minutes to go. His score was still decent due to the line break but it is mildly concerning for owners.
JFH (67) played big minutes this week with the other middle forward minutes being shared amongst Leota (42), Tamou (38) and Leniu (24). May spent some time playing as a running middle before he moved out wider.
Kikau and Martin both played 80 minutes on their respective edges.
No major injuries for the Cowboys but some interesting rotations in Paul Green’s last game as coach of the Cowboys.
Robson (51) shared minutes at hooker with Cotter (29) but for once he didn’t stay on and play in the middle.
McGuire played the full 80 minutes, while Taumalolo (64), Molo (38), Gilbert (34) and Cooper (20) shared minutes in the middle.
Wright (63) left the game in the second half which saw Dunn move to his edge for the remaining of the game. Hess (76) came off just before the end of the game, with Cooper getting the last four minutes – not sure if there’s any injury issue or whatever. All in all, I am confused!