Sharks hooker Michael Ennis passes in his side's clash with the Raiders.

We take a look at some of the key and quirky stats leading into the eight games in Round 23 of the NRL Telstra Premiership.

 

Cowboys v Rabbitohs: The Cowboys are ranked 1st in the league in post contact metres (614m per game) and average 27 tackle breaks per game (4th highest). The Rabbitohs are ranked second in tackle breaks (30 per game) and have made 89 line breaks this season which is first in the competition.

The Cowboys have scored an average of 23 points in home games this season, while the Rabbitohs have managed to only score an average of 16 points in away games.

 

Broncos v Dragons: This game pits two defensively sound teams against each other. Both teams produce a tackle efficiency of 90.6 per cent (ranked equal 2nd), however the Broncos miss the fewest tackles per game (20) in comparison to the Dragons who miss 22 tackles on average (5th fewest).

In attack, the Broncos have scored the most tries this season so far (87), while the Dragons have scored the equal least amount of tries (58).

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Wests Tigers v Knights: Wests Tigers have a real worry with their right edge defence, with Mitchell Moses (3.9 missed tackles per game), Kevin Naiqama (2.5 missed tackles per game) and David Nofoaluma (2.8 missed tackles per game) allowing 50.6 per cent of all tries conceded by the Tigers this year down their right edge. If the Knights can get early ball through Sione Mata'utia and Nathan Ross out on their left wing, they could run in a few tries.

The Tigers have the second most tries originating from their own half with a total of 11 tries having a play the ball preceding the try in the attacking team's own half, while the Knights have the highest percentage of last plays before a try originating in the attacking 0-20m zone (77.6 per cent)

 

Panthers v Warriors: The Panthers average the most dummy passes in the competition with 32.2 per game but also average the most offload passes with 15.4 per game.

The Warriors produce the 2nd most bomb kicks on average, with 5.6 per game. The Warriors are really missing Shaun Johnson who scored 11.7 per cent of all of the Warriors tries (8 out of 68), 21.5 per cent of try assists (11 out of 51), 23.2 per cent of line break assists (13 out of 56) and 15.3 per cent of all line breaks (13 out of 85).

 

Roosters v Eels: In the last three clashes between these two teams, the Roosters have outscored the Eels 106-42.

In their last five games, the Roosters have scored 27 tries and conceded just 12. Out of these 27 tries, 70 per cent of them have been scored by their back five, with Roger Tuivasa-Sheck scoring six tries in his last five games.

If the Eels have any chance of producing the upset of the season they must somehow reverse their current disciplinary trends. On average the Eels average 28 missed tackles per game (3rd highest), have conceded 142 penalties (3rd highest) and have a tackle efficiency of 88.9 per cent (5th worst). 

 

Raiders v Sea Eagles: The Raiders are ranked 1st in the league for quick play-the-balls (17.8 per cent), 1st for goalkicking accuracy (84.9 per cent) and 2nd for total tries scored (80). 

The Sea Eagles have been on the rise in the run to the finals. Here is a comparison of their past six games to the rest of their season:

 

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Bulldogs v Titans: The Bulldogs are 1st in hit-up runs and run metres (1,745 hit-ups for 15,879m) and 2nd for metres in contact (11,522m). They are also 1st for ineffective tackles (330).

The Titans are ranked 2nd for offloads (223), 2nd for one-on-one steals (7) and 3rd for quick play-the-balls.

 

Sharks v Storm: The positional match-up between Michael Ennis and Cameron Smith could be the key to the outcome of this match:

Michael Ennis

 

Cameron Smith

19

Matches

19

104 (551m)

Runs (m)

159 (985m)

52m

Metres in Contact

261m

5

Offloads

15

12

Line Break Assists

11

105 (2825m)

Kicks (m)

68 (1918m)

1

Tries

1

14

Try Assists

10

 

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