Croker’s Call: Purple patch has Stockmen rising

Canberra Raiders captain Jarrod Croker reveals his NRL SuperCoach trades and tactics for Round 18.

Croker's Call

It’s been a great patch of SuperCoach form for the Stockmen who have recorded a treble of rises of late.

Last week’s score of 684 points saw another small jump into just overall 8,000th overall which is getting respectable.

Taane Mile went huge with 131 points, while I was able to lock in a loophole on Cody Walker with his 130 points.

On the flipside, the less said the better about the likes of recruits Campbell Graham and Kodi Nikorima. Hopefully the boys can bounce back in coming weeks.

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I feel as though my side is set up well enough to keep up the charge to higher honours overall, although my main goal is to make a run in the SC Playbook head-to-head finals.

I’m currently sitting in eighth of 10, a game behind Socceroos keeper Maty Ryan.

I was towelled up by a former winner in Dez Creek last round which didn’t help my aspirations.

This week I face the SC Spy so it doesn’t get any easier.

I’ve got $282,000 heading into my trades this week which gives me a bit of room to play with.

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TRADES

REIMIS SMITH to DAVID FIFITA

I’d ideally like to hold onto Reimis Smith while playing in a dominant Melbourne team, but I have enough decent stock in my centres that I don’t particularly need him.

He’s done well for me so far this season and has been handy to play in games heavily favouring Melbourne.

He drops out, David Fifita comes in.

We experienced first hand a few weeks back how devastating Fifita is as a ball-runner.

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For obvious reasons he is a focal point of the Titans attack and will be as they fight for a finals berth this season.

He’s the likeliest of just about any forward in the competition to amass attacking stats, and as an 80 minute player he is hard to go past.

Gold Coast have a near full strength team back on deck and it gives them plenty of creative spark with ball in hand.

A greater attacking unit also creates fluency in their shape which enables them to isolate Fifita on the opposing halfback he’s running at, which is a terrifying task for anyone.

He’s an easy selection for my side at a pretty affordable rate too.

At this point it’ll just be the one trade for the week, subject to change…

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CAPTAINS

Cody Walker did me wonders last round and I’m backing him to do the same against Canterbury-Bankstown on Sunday.

He’ll be out to again prove a point following his Origin snub, and with a pretty well full strength South Sydney side on field he could run riot again.

I’ve given most of my star recruits this season a chance to shine on debut for the Stockmen, so this week I’ll hand the vice-captaincy to Fifita despite his tough match up with Parramatta.

Good luck to everyone in Round 18!

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