Lone Scout's NRL Fantasy Q&A: Round 22

The NRL Fantasy head-to-head finals are here, but thanks to a knee injury Andrew Fifita isn't. 

Is the Sharks big man a sell, who are the best replacements, and what should you do with Robbie Farah, Nathan Cleary, Alex Twal, Angus Crichton and more?

This week's Fantasy questions

What to do with Fifita, trade or hold? I can hold and use Kenny as my reserve as he is my 18th man?

From Rodney Contojohn

Hold if you can. Chances are Andrew Fifita misses one game with a knee injury and returns for Cronulla's round 23 clash with the Warriors, although there is a chance he misses another week to regain full fitness. It's certainly an easier decision if you have a decent 18th man (Kenny, a solid scorer when he gets the minutes, is OK) and if you aren't facing a must-win head-to-head game this week – for example if you've finished in the top four of your league and aren't playing a sudden-death final this week.

If you're desperate for points though, or have several trades remaining, or have zero cover, then you'll need to trade.

What are the chances that Fifi returns from injury to the same bench role for the same minutes?

From Cam O'Dwyer

That is certainly a concern. Fifita has been carrying this injury for a while so that could be a reason for his limited game time in recent weeks. Through the first 11 rounds this season he played at least 50 minutes in all but one game, barring an injury-affected six-minute stint in round nine. Since then he's only played more than 50 minutes once in six matches.

He scores better than a point a minute but still needs decent game time to produce scores in the mid-50s. Ideally, by resting up now, Fifita will be closer to full fitness the next time he's back on the paddock and capable of playing close to an hour a match once more.

Get rid of Twal? And keep Fifita?

From Luke Field

Yes, and see above for Fifita.

Best trade for Fifi? JFH, Klemmer or Kapow? Take out DPP factor.

From Mike Cachemaille

Klemmer probably just shades James Fisher-Harris if you ignore the fact Fisher-Harris is available as a dual-position player.

I need one more dual-position forward to fill in the bench, James Fisher-Harris or Martin Taupau?

From Darren Barker

Fisher-Harris.

I have two trades left. Is there anyone actually good I could sell Farah for at a similar price this week or should I sit on him?

From Lachlan Smith

Farah is a sell. With a fractured tibia he could return by round 25, but it's hard to see him back any sooner than that (and a more likely prognosis is that his season and career is over).

If you have no spare cash though then Farah's $612k price tag makes him a tricky player to replace. Assuming you don't need another hooker, James Graham comes in just under that price tag and has scored 59, 56 and 50 in the last three rounds so could be a straight swap.

Need to trade Farah. Best player under $685,000 to bring in? Leaning towards Arrow but maybe Brown, Hunt or Wighton?

From Brad Ingram

I rate Jai Arrow or Nathan Brown as buys. Both are all-action locks who seem to be back to their usual selves after injury-affected seasons. Arrow may have a slight edge as the Eels' relatively easy draw could affect Brown's tackle counts in the run home.

I've got a Cleary dilemma. Had a great game last week without Maloney but is Cleary to DCE an upgrade? DCE wasn't great last week?

From Darren King

Nathan Cleary is a hold. He has averaged 53 points a game this year and is coming off a score of 79. Even with James Maloney back he's capable of making regular 50s.

Is Angus Crichton looking to play 80 mins a game going into finals? Have one trade left and looking to get him in.

From Jake Christensen

No he looks like a trap. Crichton at his best is a tackle-busting 80-minute back-rower (like he was last week, scoring 70) but Boyd Cordner is set to return this week or next and could easily bump Crichton back to the interchange.