Holden Cup wrap: Round 13
All the key stats, breakout players and talking points from Round 13 of the National Youth Competition.
The three-headed Dragon
Fans of Game of Thrones will know just how destructive Daenerys Targaryen's dragons are, but St George Illawarra showed on Saturday they possess a three-pronged attacking arsenal that can match the firepower of Drogon, Rhaegal and Viserion when in sync. Five-eighth Tristan Sailor was at his destructive best with a hat-trick while winger Jason Gillard also chipped in with three tries of his own. Halfback Jackson Willis was the orchestrator of most of their attacking raids, producing three try assists with some superb short kicks.
Parramatta's unstoppable double act
It's important to note that there was a slight change to the tactic in Round 13, but for the most part, the Eels have relied on the tag team of Denzal Tonise and Reed Mahoney to dominate the middle of the field in 2017. Matt Price was given the start in the No.9 jersey on Friday night with Tonise shifting to lock, but as we've seen throughout the season, Mahoney came on after 18 minutes and controlled the game from hooker thereafter. Tonise normally starts at No.9 and then moves to lock when Mahoney comes on, with the pair forming a destructive combination through the ruck. In Friday's win over the Warriors, Mahoney made 51 tackles and set up two tries, while Tonise made 49 tackles, ran for 177 metres and scored a try.
Players of the Round
We're tracking the best performances every round this year with a good old-fashioned 3-2-1 points system.
3 – Sea Eagles five-eighth Tom Wright had a whale of a game on Sunday morning with two tries, a couple of assists and 168 running metres to go with three line breaks and nine tackle busts in Manly's win over the Raiders.
2 – Panthers hooker Wayde Egan continued his dream start to the year with his two-try haul against the Bulldogs taking his season tally to 12 in 2017, just one behind Cronulla's Sione Katoa.
1 – His teammates have stolen all the headlines with their try-scoring brilliance, but Dragons back-rower Jackson Ford deserves a special mention for his efforts on Saturday afternoon. Ford finished with 169 metres, 18 tackles, five tackle breaks and four offloads and was a constant threat on the left edge.
Eels 22 – Warriors 6
Storm 20 – Knights 27
Dragons 54 – Wests Tigers 16
Bulldogs 12 – Panthers 28
Roosters 14 – Broncos 22
Cowboys 36 – Titans 18
Sea Eagles 34 – Raiders 18