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Friday, 15 March 2013

NRL 2013: The two things that have to happen for the Parramatta Eels to win... | #1stTackle

1st TACKLE: Eels can't make the playoffs
Round 2 Set of 6 and @NRLTweet Player of the Year Votes

2013 NRL Premiership

By W D Nicolson - March 15, 2013


Can Chris Sandow get the Eels back into contention by himself?
This is a new feature on www.wdnicolson.com - every week we will post a Set of 6 Tackles that form a Complete Set by the end of the Round. It also features Votes from Round 2 of The @NRLTweet Player of the Year Awards. Let us know what you think @NRLTweet

ROUND 2 TIPS HERE | ROUND 2 SET OF 6: 1st TACKLE | 2nd TACKLE |

@NRLTweet
Parra won't make the playoffs...
But you knew that already.

(So Josh Dugan is no longer a Raider? Read our 1st Complete Set below for more on the fallout from Round 1.)

So Round 2 is underway and the Parramatta faithful might be tempering their long term expectations after the Eels fell short of victory against the Bulldogs at ANZ Stadium on Thursday night.

The 1st half produced seven tries and plenty of entertainment before the 2nd half turned into Canterbury error followed by Parramatta wasting a try-scoring opportunity... on repeat.

Don't get me wrong the Eels tried their guts out... but two things from 20-16 loss to Canterbury proved the theory I have about Parramatta in Year One under Ricky Stuart.

One - IF they defend with the intensity they did last night and try and force teams to go around them rather than through the middle - they won't leak points in games when they get a fair share of possession. This doesn't guarantee a win though...

Two - BUT unless BOTH Chris Sandow and Jarryd Hayne play their best at the same time - Parramatta can't beat the good teams regularly... if at all.

And if this theory proves true over the rest of the season (I admit it is only after two weeks) then Parramatta can't make the Finals.

@NRLTweet Player of the Year - Round 2 Voting
THU: PAR 16-20 CBY
8 - J Jackson, 3 - C Sandow, 2 - J Morris, 1 - J Reynolds.
Voters | W Nicolson @NRLTweet and M Spillane @Devonhead

Now remember I also declared they'd be Wooden Spooners on www.wdnicolson.com before the season started, so before you shout obscenities in my direction ask yourself this question:

Am I overreacting more to a fortnight of footy or are Parramatta believers the delusional ones?

My reasoning that Parra can't make the Finals is linked far more to the Sandow/Hayne reason and here's why:

In Round 1 - both were very good but their performances were amplified somewhat by a terrible effort from the Warriors. I refuse to put stock in a rush of late game points, as the Warriors had got back to within 8 points with 17 minutes to go before the floodgates finally opened on them. But up until that point Hayne and Sandow had been difference makers. So credit where it is due. They both fired, Parra won.

In Round 2 - Sandow put on another quality performance but when push came to shove in the 2nd half, Hayne didn't step up and give Sandow the support that Parramatta needed to break Canterbury. Hayne tried hard as he always does, but it wasn't his night and despite Sandow's spark (particularly in the 1st half) - Parra's most dangerous player late in the game was probably Joseph Paulo.

So with two games viewed, my evaluation on Parramatta is that defensively they have improved (staying at Stuart's required intensity and structure over a full season is the challenge) but they still rely on the dual brilliance of Sandow and Hayne to win games.

And if you cast your mind back to 2012 when they finished with the Wooden Spoon - is the second point really anything different from the blueprint last year?

Cheers,
Warrick D. Nicolson
THE @NRLTWEET

Do you agree or disagree with this Parramatta evaluation? 
Please comment below or reply on Twitter.

There will be more Tackles from Round 2's Set of 6 over the course of the next few days. 

A tip of the hat to the SMH's 'Set of 6' and Andy Wilson's 'Set of 6' for the name, as Complete Set just doesn't roll off the tongue quite as well, and well call it flattery that you've already used it.

2ND COMPLETE SET: 
Round 2 - Six points that emerged from a four day footy week.
CURRENT NRL LADDER
FIRST TACKLE - Parramatta can't make the playoffs...
See article above...

THIRD TACKLE - TBA
To be added

For The Postman's analysis of each game for Round 2, with our NRL Dream Team and NRL Super Coach tips for players you need to consider/ignore from each side - click here.

FOURTH TACKLE - TBA
To be added

FIFTH AND LAST - TBA
To be added

CHANGEOVER - TBA
To be added

@NRLTweet Player of the Year Award
Round 2 Votes

As regular readers of www.wdnicolson.com and followers of @NRLTweet know - we run The @NRLTweet Player of the Year Awards each season (starting in 2010) and they return once again for 2013 with another group of excellent Rugby League judges.

You can follow the Votes live after each game via this Hashtag #NRLTweetPOTY

One of the reasons we set this up is the Dally M Award lacks the kind of objectivity that a true player of the year award really should have, and while we aren't claiming our system is perfect - it is judged on what happens on the field with reputations and bias left by the wayside.

This is how the votes went in Round 2.

@NRLTweet Player of the Year - Round 2 Voting
THURSDAY
PAR 16-20 CBY
8 - J Jackson, 3 - C Sandow, 2 - J Morris, 1 - J Reynolds.
Voters | W Nicolson @NRLTweet and M Spillane @Devonhead
FRIDAY
STI v BRI
TBA
Voters | M Tsialis @mtsialis and A McMurray @adrmcm
SATURDAY
WAR v SYD
TBA
Voters | B Jones @benwah87 and B Hoese @gunnermcdagget
NQL v MEL
TBA
Voters | M Spillane @devonhead and M Trodden @trods2906
SUNDAY
GLD v CAN
TBA
Voters | M Vickers @mercurialmattyv and G Delaney @gregdelaney84
WTG v PEN
TBA
Voters | Justin Davies @dragonpunk12 and A McMurray @adrmcm
MAN v NEW
TBA
Voters | M Trodden @trods2906 and M Duncan @mrpeninsula
MONDAY
SOU v CRO
TBA
Voters | W Nicolson @nrltweet and N Wilbow @parramatters

Round 1 Leaderboard (Full update after completion of Round 2):
8 - C Cronk, C Sandow, S Burgess, J Thurston, P Gallen
6 - J Segeyaro, A Uate, D Gagai
5 - S Matai
4 - D Cherry-Evans, G Inglis, T Carney

You can follow the Votes live after each game via this Hashtag #NRLTweetPOTY

Share your thoughts on the footy so far by commenting below or replying on Twitter.


The NRL Injury List is updated regularly during each week of the season, making it an invaluable Fantasy and Tipping Tool alongside our Weekly NRL Previews once again.

Remember if you want game-specific Late Mail every week, then check out our Round Previews Every Wednesday and they are updated with all the very latest Late Mail on Friday.

If we are missing any players on this list - please comment below, reply on Twitter or email this address.
Who will take Ben Barba's mantle as champion in the 2013 @NRLTweet Player of the Year Awards?

The Prestigious Award returns for a 4th season in 2013.

Remember you can track all the votes each week after each match in 2013 via the Twitter hashtag #nrltweetpoty

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