NRL Fantasy winners & losers: Round 19
Angus Crichton's record for greatest ever Fantasy score didn't last long with a new champ emerging – and making a case for future State of Origin selection in the process. Here are the success stories, flops and talking points to come out of this week's NRL Fantasy action.
We have a new record holder for greatest individual Fantasy score, with Nathan Cleary scoring a hat-trick, laying on two more tries and generally having a field day in Penrith's win over the Warriors in Auckland for a stunning return of 126 Fantasy points. With Matt Moylan sidelined, his halves partner needed to step up and he did so, and then some, toppling Crichton's 121-point effort from Round 15 this year.
Sharks skipper Paul Gallen proved to be the best of the obvious captaincy options in Round 19 with a quality 84 in a losing side against the Titans, with 71 of those points coming from 51 tackles and 202 metres.
Daly Cherry-Evans (78) was brilliant again for the Sea Eagles in their win over the Tigers with a 40/20, a try assist, a line break, five tackle busts and four goals, while Ash Taylor (74) starred for the Titans and tackle machines Simon Mannering (72) and Cameron McInnes (71) pipped Cowboys cannonball Jason Taumalolo (70).
Usual suspects Angus Crichton (67), Jack de Belin (66) and Bodene Thompson (62) also impressed along with speedsters James Roberts (64), Tom Trbojevic (62) and James Tedesco (58), while Aaron Woods (59) played the full 80 minutes in the front row for the injury-hit Wests Tigers.
Expect Shaun Johnson to be the most traded out player this round after succumbing to a knee injury that could sideline him for some time in the Warriors' loss to Penrith. He still scored solidly with 46 to carry his price to $538,000 – just past the price tag of Mitchell Pearce who is the most obvious replacement option.
Injuries also struck Knights centre Peter Mata'utia (concussion, -1) and Wests Tigers hooker Jacob Liddle (shoulder, 2) early on in their matches, while Alex Johnston (5), Kurt Baptiste (5), Gerard Beale (5) and Ben Hampton (5) were among the other players to hit single-digit scores.
Tyrell Fuimaono had looked a potential keeper at centre in recent weeks after securing a starting role in South Sydney's back row but a 19 in 39 minutes against the Cowboys will have his owners a little worried, and likewise for Tim Lafai's 19 - his third score of 25 or under in his past five games. Dylan Walker (23 and 21) and Jarrod Croker (18 and 26) are also going through quiet patches of form in the centres.
Fantasy team of the week - Round 19
1. Tom Trbojevic (62)
2. Nene Macdonald (76)
3. Solomone Kata (65)
4. James Roberts (64)
5. James Tedesco (58)
6. Daly Cherry-Evans (78)
7. Nathan Cleary (126)
8. Leeson Ah Mau (62)
9. Cameron McInnes (71)
10. Korbin Sims (62)
11. Simon Mannering (72)
12. Jason Taumalolo (70)
13. Paul Gallen (84)
14. Ashley Taylor (74)
15. Mitchell Barnett (68)
16. Jake Granville (67)
17. Kevin Proctor/Angus Crichton (67)