NRL Bunker Review – Round 16

Round 16 of the 2022 NRL season opened with a bad beat for 13+ punters before ending in predictable controversy.

Bad Beat To Open Round 16

The Melbourne Storm and Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles often make headlines but Round 16 was one for 13+ punters.

Superb for 70 minutes, the Sea Eagles led the Storm 36-12. Punters cheering a Sea Eagles win by 13+ sat comfortably. However, as they had done in Round 15 while losing to the Cowboys, the home side fell asleep.

74′ Asofa-Solomona
77′ Papenhuyzen
78′ Olam
79′ Papenhuyzen

The Storm scored four tries in five minutes and even had a chance at scoring a match-winner with the final play of the game. Des Hasler’s side held on, but 13+ punters sat in disbelief as the NRL round opened with a remarkable bad beat.

Edrick Lee Good, Justin Holbrook Gone?

Edrick Lee made the most of his Newcastle Knights playing a truly horrendous Gold Coast Titans side in Round 16 of the 2022 NRL season.

The 29-year-old finished up with five tries as the Knights ran away with a much-needed 38-12 win. Notably, Anthony Milford contributed to a couple of them in his best performance for his new club. The Knights are searching for their first-choice halves combination and seem to have found it in Milford and Adam Clune.

However, all of this did come against the Titans…

Justin Holbrook is lucky to still be in the job at the time of writing. Appearing disinterested, lacking in defence and errors aplenty, the Titans looked beaten from kickoff. This is a group waiting for the season to end already and they’re in a fight to avoid the spoon with an equally poor West Tigers outfit.

Statement Game of Round 16

Statements are made every round in the NRL. In Round 15 it was the Parramatta Eels. This week it’s the South Sydney Rabbitohs.

We’ve been waiting for Latrell Mitchell to return to get a better idea of the South Sydney Rabbitohs.

They’ve been there or thereabouts for a lot of the NRL season. A tough draw made them look worse than they were early. Poor performances when the draw evened out started to have some people think they’d struggle to make the Top 8. However, now 16 rounds in and following an excellent 30-12 win over the Parramatta Eels to jump to 7th on the NRL ladder, the Rabbitohs are back in the hunt.

Not yet competing for the premiership, there is a world if it all comes together across the last nine rounds. Mitchell made his mark on the side and had an instant impact in attack. He finished up with 145 running metres, four tackle breaks and two line-break assists. While he didn’t register a try assist, he certainly played a role in how South Sydney scored their points.

With the Knights and Bulldogs to come, the Rabbitohs can start a nice little run here. Notably, Mitchell has removed himself from State of Origin contention and will be available in a period he’d have otherwise missed. If they can make the most of this friendly draw and Mitchell’s availability, the Rabbitohs could yet knock on the door of a Top 4 spot before the end of Round 25.

Welcome Home, Warriors

The New Zealand Warriors returned home to Mt Smart Stadium for the first time in 1,000 days and rewarded their fans with a 22-2 win over the hapless Tigers.

It couldn’t have worked out better, really. The Warriors have struggled this season and while improving, wouldn’t have beaten too many teams given their recent form. However, the Tigers are an opposed training session at the moment. Stacey Jones and the Warriors knew that if they kept at it with the ball and played with energy in defence, they’d take the chocolates.

Tohu Harris fittingly scored the first try back at home and the Warriors looked relatively comfortable from there. The scoreboard read as a close game for a lot of the match, but the Tigers rarely threatened with the ball. Their lack of attack is a massive concern for Brett Kimmorley. Edge defence isn’t a strength of the Warriors and the Tigers barely threw a punch out wide.

Still, this day belonged to the Warriors who deserved the win not only for their performance on the day, but for their service over the last two and a half years.

Controversy To Finish NRL Weekend

Who could have seen this coming…

Peter V’landys rushed through poorly thought out rule changes and despite anybody that spent longer than 15 minutes thinking about the six again rule highlighting this scenario as a possible result, the rule remained.

The Canberra Raiders didn’t necessarily deserve to win (they played poorly), but they deserved a chance to go to Golden Point. Instead, the St. George-Illawarra Dragons did what any smart team would do to secure the 12-10 win on Sunday afternoon.