Round 19 Team of the Week
The 17 players who shone the brightest across the weekend as the NRL paid tribute to Alex McKinnon.
1. Mitchell Moses (Wests Tigers)
In only his third NRL game, Moses stamped his authority on the NRL during the Tigers' demolition of the Bulldogs with a staggering five try assists. The 19-year-old was phenomenal with the ball after running for 121 metres to accompany his two line breaks, two line-break assists and three tackle breaks.
2. Alex Johnston (Rabbitohs)
Speaking of 19-year-olds, Rabbitohs winger Johnston proved he has the speed to burn after making Vai Toutai look silly on numerous occasions. Johnston scored two tries (to make it nine tries from eight games), made 127 metres and two line breaks and added another three tackle breaks to his season tally.
3. Dave Taylor (Titans)
Titans coach John Cartwright's decision to move Taylor to the centres paid instant dividends with the 'Coal Train' constantly threatening. The Queensland representative scored a bullocking try and punched out 191 metres, a line break, a line break assist, a try assist and six tackle breaks in the Titans' win over the Knights.
4. Dale Copley (Broncos)
With Daniel Vidot and Jack Reed stood down for the game last weekend against the Warriors, Copley stepped into the centre position with aplomb. Copley did the Broncos proud by scoring a double as well as producing three line breaks, five tackle breaks and 210 metres.
5. Keith Lulia (Wests Tigers)
Moving out to the wing paid off for the veteran Lulia against the Bulldogs on Sunday afternoon. With momentum on the Tigers' side, Lulia was the main beneficiary after equalling the club record of four tries scored in a match. The usual centre also made three line breaks and 111 metres.
6. Bryce Cartwright (Panthers)
Listed to play off the bench and pushed into the starting line-up to play in the back row an hour before kick-off, Cartwright did neither but instead produced a solid performance at five-eighth for the Panthers. With Peter Wallace out, Cartwright scored a try to accompany his 35 tackles, five tackle breaks and 86 run metres in the Panthers' 20-point loss.
7. Johnathan Thurston (Cowboys)
The Cowboys captain was instrumental in the Townsville-based club's first win away from home since Round 25 last season. Thurston scored 20 of his team's points and also assisted in another try and a line break in North Queensland's 36-18 win over the Sharks.
8. Sam Moa (Roosters)
The barging Roosters prop is making his way up the pecking order in Bondi with another outstanding effort. The Kiwi international smashed out 134 metres, 35 tackles and three tackle breaks in the Roosters' win over the Panthers on Saturday.
9. Issac Luke (Rabbitohs)
There was no safety net this weekend for Luke. It was now or never. With Api Koroisau not on the bench, Luke was the Rabbitohs' one and only hooking option and grabbed the opportunity with both hands with his best performance since coming back from his long-term shoulder injury. The hooker made 175 metres, 33 tackles and six tackle breaks.
10. Corey Parker (Broncos)
The Brisbane co-captain was everywhere against the Warriors. When he wasn't keeping busy in defence with 37 tackles to his name, Parker was producing phenomenal numbers for the Broncos. The utility made 167 metres, two line break assists, two try assists and five offloads in their win over the Warriors.
11. Boyd Cordner (Roosters)
The No.16 jersey did wonders for several players over the RiseForAlex Round but it was Cordner who stood out the most with his dominant display against the Panthers. The back-rower conjured 202 metres and 37 tackles and capped off the performance with two tries.
12. Sam Burgess (Rabbitohs)
The Rabbitohs forward did his chances at Dally M Medal glory no harm once again with another barnstorming display against the Eels. His two tries, 204 metres, two line breaks and five tackle breaks were the difference in the Rabbitohs' win. The back-rower was also a rock in defence making 32 tackles.
13. Glenn Hall (Cowboys)
He didn't get much game time but Cowboys lock Hall made it count when he was on the paddock. In just over a quarter of the game on the field, Hall scored a try under the black dot as well as producing 121 metres, a line break, three offloads, 26 tackles and two tackle breaks.
14. Kieran Foran (Manly)
A man of the match effort against the Dragons sees the Manly five-eighth nab a bench spot in this week's team. Foran is currently on a rare try-scoring run after notching his third try in two weeks against the Dragons. Foran backed it up in defence with a solid 12 tackles in another solid hit out from the Sea Eagles.
15. Michael Morgan (Cowboys)
Morgan scored a try for the highlight reel when he literally crawled his way to the try-line with two defenders hanging onto him against Cronulla. Apart from the point scoring, Morgan kept himself handy to punch out two line breaks, a line break assist, a try assist and four tackle busts in the Cowboys' win.
16. Simon Mannering (Warriors)
Captain Mannering continued his outstanding form for the Warriors up at Suncorp Stadium against the Broncos on Saturday night. The skipper was busy all night in both aspects of the game with a try, three tackle busts and 142 metres assuring his handiness with the ball while his 37 tackles kept the Brisbane attack coy whenever they ran at him.
17. Jesse Bromwich (Storm)
Jesse Bromwich put forward another tough performance for the Storm on Saturday night. The Kiwis' most prominent prop continued his prosperous form for Melbourne with his 146 metres and 34 tackles keeping him busy all night long.