Captain’s Challenge: Who to skipper in Round 15?

We run the rule over the best NRL SuperCoach captaincy options to select in Round 15.

Captain's Challenge

What a difficult week for skippers Round 14 proved to be.

Nathan Cleary and Tom Trbojevic were both named, before being pulled out of their respective clashes, thankfully well in advance of final teams.

James Tedesco loomed as a great skipper after Trent Robinson stated he was expected to play, before failing a fitness test on the morning of the game against the Titans and being ruled out.

Tedesco was our initial choice, when he was ruled out it fell onto Clint Gutherson followed by Nicho Hynes who both scored well with 95 and 87 respectively.

This week we get full teams on deck, and outside of Tom Trbojevic’s match up with the Titans in the final game of the round it’s a pretty open affair again.

Let’s take a look at the weekend’s best options to wear the armband in Round 15.

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TIER ONE

TOM TRBOJEVIC

Tommy Turbo looks the man for the job this week for anyone who held through his two weeks off.

For non-owners, including yours truly, it’s going to be almost impossible to watch Manly play the next two weeks.

Put simply, the Titans defence is abysmal having conceded the third most points in the NRL this season with 380 in 14 games at 27 points per game.

They concede the sixth most SuperCoach points to fullbacks which isn’t horrible, but I expect Turbo to fry them.

He has a season average of 116PPG thanks to five tonnes in seven games.

He’ll be fresh following a very lengthy spell post Origin 2.

Following an injury lay off, he put 116 points on the Titans in Round 6 in 72 minutes in his first game of the year.

He’ll destroy them…

NICHO HYNES

For non Tommy owners, Nicho Hynes will again be a great option against a terrible defensive unit in the Tigers who have conceded the fourth most points of any team in the NRL.

They’ve also conceded the fifth most SuperCoach points to fullbacks this season.

I expect the Storm to obliterate the Tigers at near full strength and Hynes will be in everything and kicking goals.

The absence of a quality defender in Adam Doueihi is only going to help the Storm’s outside backs.

With Ryan Papenhuzyen a chance at returning in Round 16 it may be the last time we see Nicho in our sides this season, so hopefully he leaves with a bang.

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CLINT GUTHERSON

King Gutho continues to stand up with back-to-back scores of 95 and 121.

He takes on the Bulldogs who have conceded the fifth most points this season.

They concede the equal fifth most SuperCoach points to fullbacks.

Going back to Round 8 this season, he starred with 140 points against the Dogs.

While the Bulldogs showed some ticker against an ordinary Dragons outfit last week, the rampant Eels will have too much firepower and should put a score on.

Gutho has just two scores under 58 this season (47 v Roosters and 32 v Storm), alongside four tonnes.

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TIER TWO

CODY WALKER

Gee Cody is tempting against the Broncos who have thrown up very little in recent weeks.

Yes they’ve shown up against the Panthers and Roosters this year which is some concern, but I think they’re a team on the decline, while the Rabbitohs are a side on the up.

It’d take a brave SuperCoach to skipper Cody on Thursday night, but it could pay off big time on the fast and dry Suncorp Stadium surface.

Outside of his 16 against Melbourne when the Rabbitohs were belted, all his scores have been between 52 and 97 this season.

With the Bunnies clicking of late, his first tonne is on the horizon, and I think it’ll be this week.

Most importantly, he was swinging both sides of the ruck which is vital to his SuperCoach scoring potential.

With Latrell Mitchell on deck last season and at times this year he’s tended to stick to his left edge more often, but it appears he’s been given the licence to play both sides, massive!

LATRELL MITCHELL

I won’t go into detail on Latrell because he doesn’t have many owners, but if I did own I’d probably skipper him (provided I didn’t own Turbo).

Brisbane concede the most points to fullbacks in SuperCoach, and only last week conceded 116 points to Bailey Simonsson wearing the number one jumper!

Latrell is averaging 78PPG this season with a low score of just 48 and two tonnes.

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CAMERON MUNSTER

Munster appears to have not really shifted out of second gear yet this year, basically because he hasn’t needed to in a star-studded Storm outfit with strike across the park.

When they need him to lift he does, but in easier fixtures (most weeks), he kind of takes a back seat.

He’s due to explode and the Tigers may be the perfect opposition to do so. They’ve conceded the most SuperCoach points to 5/8s this season.

Harry Grant is another to consider, however I’d be more confident if he were playing 80 minutes.

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CAPTAIN RISKY/POD SKIPPERS

VALENTINE HOLMES

Val Holmes will be tempting for owners against the Sharks in Townsville.

It’s such a terrific surface for expansive footy that suits genuine speed as we saw in the Origin opener.

Incredibly, Holmes’ 42 last week against Manly was his first sub 50 score since Round 1 against Penrith.

Prior to last week, he had back-to-back tonnes and is looking electric on field.

More importantly, the Cowboys are starting to show a bit more fluency in attack that is bolstering his scoring, including his goal-kicking.

The Sharks do defend fullbacks okay having conceded the 9th most points to number ones this season.

Wade Graham is one of the game’s premier defenders and will be a huge loss for the Sharks.

I’d probably avoid skippering him but it’d be a massive POD play, however the vice-captain armband is probably the move.

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AVOID

NATHAN CLEARY and JAMES TEDESCO

While the Roosters are missing plenty of stars, this should be a fairly tight contest that both sides will be up for.

Missing a host of Origin players, the Panthers have lost back-to-back games and will be fired up to make amends with everyone back on deck.

It’s two stout defensive units going head-to-head, so it may not be a game littered in points.

While both Tedesco and Cleary could score extremely well, I think there’s better options available this week.

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VERDICT

The number one skipper choice this week is of course Tom Trbojevic who is comfortably my number one pick.

As a non-owner, I’d be happy to see him score anything under 150 to be honest, but I’m not confident.

For non Turbo owners, it’s again a toss up between Nicho Hynes and Clint Gutherson, but I like the look of the Storm fullback as I expect them to belt the Tigers.

While the Eels should win comfortably too, Nicho’s goal-kicking edges him ahead for me.

Turbo owners can skipper Hynes, while non-Turbo owners will have to look elsewhere.

For me, I can’t go past Cody Walker who is due for a three figure score, and Suncorp Stadium looks the perfect venue to do so.

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