Croker’s Call: Thinking big with new recruits

Canberra Raiders captain Jarrod Croker reveals his trades and tactics for Round 14.

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Just when things were looking up, the Stockmen have had consecutive weeks of rank drops, albeit small.

In Round 13 I managed 1,132 points, and although I didn’t have too many bad scorers, none of my players were able to hit 100+.

My POD (yep, I’m learning the lingo), Luke Keary almost got there with 98, while Jake Trbojevic continued his form with 90 points.

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New recruit Jazz Tevaga did me a solid with 73 points, while Toby Rudolf bashed out 60 points as a late inclusion due to injuries.

Devastatingly my captain Cam Munster went down injured after looking on track for a big score.

Not to worry, onto Round 14.

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CAM MUNSTER to NATHAN CLEARY

A pretty easy move here with Munster out and Cleary proving arguably the competition’s form halfback. It’s hurt me not owning him, so it’ll be a relief to get him into my squad.

Penrith are playing some serious football this season, and a relative lack of injuries has ensured they’re sending out close to their best 17 at the moment.

This is a huge factor for them in their run to the finals, and Cleary should only continue his form as a result.

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RYAN PAPENHUYZEN to KALYN PONGA

Another pretty easy call. I’ve been scoring pretty well lately but can’t seem to get the big individual scores to send me up the ranks.

I’ll be bringing in Ponga this week to hopefully stop that happening.

It was hard to pass up Papenhuyzen who will be more central to Melbourne’s attack with Cam Smith and Munster out. But as of Thursday night it looks to have paid off.

CAPTAINS

I’ve had a similar trend all year in skippering my new recruits when it suits, and I’ll keep it up this week.

I like to test them early and see how they perform under pressure…

This week it’s Ponga’s turn to provide me with double points, so let’s hope he’s thrives for Croker’s Stockmen on debut.

My vice-captain will be Cleary who has a chance to score very well against the Warriors on Friday night.

Good luck to everyone in Round 14!

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