With T May out for the season, I think this could change our round 1 line up.
We all know May was out for rounds 1 and 2 with suspension. It was likely that Turuva would take his spot.
Now nothing against Turuva, he’s a fine young player, but given this is going to be a season long replacement, I think other options come into play.
A simple winger replacement with no other movements (as such), would be Turuva, Amituanai or McLean. Issues are Turuva is a fullback, learning centre, and the other two while promising wingers are untested in first grade (and only just stepped up from Flegg). Some of these options could require To’o to switch sides.
The next option would see Critta moved to the wing, with a new centre instead. This opens the door to a wider range of options. I also believe this to be Critta’s best position, and obviously looks to the future. So to play centre we have Turuva, Jenkins, Salmon, Peachy, and some left field options such as Mav Geyer or even Kurt Falls.
Turuva and Jenkins would at this stage appear the heirs apparent for the centres, and both have limited first grade experience. Salmon can play centre reasonably well, but would weaken the bench, with needing a 2nd rower to replace him. The Peach had great success in the centres during his last stint at the club, but questionable if he has the pace to play centre regularly. Mav is still on a development contract, although showed fine form during the trials. Since following him for a few years I have thought his breakthrough into first grade could be via the centres like Tago. I am actually somewhat intrigued at the option of Falls. Shouldn’t be to hard for him to switch as a 5/8.
Many of these options could see To’o and/or Tago swap sides of the field.
So with that said, I would see a possible round 1 line up like thus;
FB - Edwards
WG - Crichton
CE - Tago
CE - Turuva / Jenkins / Mav / Falls
WG - To’o
FE - Luai
HB - Cleary
LF - Yeo
SR - Sorensen
SR - Martin
PF - Leota
HK - Kenny
PF - Fisher-Harris
INT - Peachy / Cogger / Luke*
INT - Leniu
INT - L. Smith
INT - Salmon
- our number 14 second hooker / utility will be interesting. Luke is a specialist hooker with question marks over his defense, and hasn’t trialed this year. Cogger is a half, but went ok at hooker last week. Peach has been there, done that and can play almost any position.
I think Lindsay Smith is ahead of Eisenhuth at the moment, and his time has come to get regular bench time. Salmon can cover most positions like peach, although obviously best as a 5/8, 2nd rower or centre.
Food for thought