Croker’s Call: In-form Stockmen add mongrel

Canberra Raiders captain Jarrod Croker reveals his trades and tactics ahead of Round 8.

Croker's Call

Croker’s Stockmen bounced back to form last week with a big round despite a few injuries in the squad.

The guys managed a very decent score of 1,172 which lifted me into 31,345 overall.

Alright, it’s still not exactly where we want to be, but things are definitely looking up.

I had recruit Xavier Coates on the bench who managed 9 points which hurt, and Josh Mansour’s late withdrawal gave me Jake Averillo as an automatic reserve for just 17 points.

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Of the positives, Ryan Papenhuyzen belted out 126 points against the Warriors which gave me a big edge on rivals.

My back-row were huge with Jake Trbojevic scoring 86, Ryan Matterson 96 and Jason Taumalolo 85.

Also how good is Harry Grant, Melbourne’s depth never ceases to amaze…

Onto Round 8 where I hope to continue my rise, and $182,700 in the cap will help.

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BRAYDEN WILIAME – TOMMY TALAU

Pretty straight forward here with Wiliame not playing in the Dragons 17 at the moment. He didn’t raise the cash I’d hoped but I’ll take what I can get.

Talau jagged a few tries last week and is hitting his high expectations early on in his NRL career.

The Tigers are firing with ball in hand, so hopefully the tries continue for young Tommy.

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JAMAYNE TAUNOA-BROWN – DAVID KLEMMER

My big move for the week is strengthening my front-row stocks.

Taunoa-Brown has done a brilliant job for me having started the year with him. He’s earned a heap of cash and is ready to be moved on.

In comes David Klemmer at the Knights who is getting through a huge workload in 2020.

I’ve got a few hit and miss type players in my side, so Klem will bring a bit of a safety net to my 17 with his consistent scoring.

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CAPTAINS

Ever since landing Tom Trbojevic with his big hundred a while ago my captain options haven’t been too good.

Last week it was Kalyn Ponga who was okay without going too big.

I’ll run with Ryan Matterson this week who hasn’t put a foot wrong since moving to the Eels.

The clash with the Cowboys looks good for Matterson who can hopefully find the line and hit a 100+ score for me.

The early match limits my vice-captain options, so I’ll go Luke Keary.

The Melbourne match up is an obvious concern. The Storm have for over a decade shown their resilience to lift for big games, so this shouldn’t be any different.

But the Roosters may just be on another level tonight. Hopefully he can repeat last week’s efforts, with an added try or two.

Good luck to everyone in Round 8!

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